Venezuelan racing driver Rodolfo Gonzalez will join Giedo van der Garde at Caterham Racing for this year's GP2 Series, the team announced on Monday.

"I am genuinely very pleased about our line up for 2012," said the team's CEO Nino Judge. "We welcome Rodolfo and Giedo into our Caterham Racing family. They bring the perfect combination of speed and experience, essential for success in GP2."

News of van der Garde's return for a fourth series of GP2 broke on Saturday, with the Dutch driver keen to use GP2 to keep him race-sharp in 2012 while he serves as Catherham F1's test and reserve driver.

"The link to the F1 team is a great advantage and I am very happy with that. I feel it's a big step up from where I was last year," insisted van der Garde. "It means I will go to all the F1 races, but I will race a full GP2 season too which keeps me sharp. Now we must make sure we are well prepared for testing and consistently score points throughout the season."

Rodolfo Gonzalez, van der Garde's new team mate for 2012, made his debut in GP2 in the same 2008-9 Asia series as the Dutchman did. Gonzalez was initially signed up by Fisichella Motor Sport and then moved to Trident for the main European GP2 Series in 2009. In 2010 he switched to Arden, and he spent last year with Trident Racing.

As well as GP2, Gonzalez has competed in Euroseries 3000, Formula Three Euroseries and Formula Renault 2.0. He was British F3 National Class champion in 2006.

"I am incredibly happy to be joining Caterham Racing this year and I can't wait to get going!" said the 25-year-old. "I believe this team will provide me with everything I need to help me up my game and have a successful season, in and out of the car."

Personal and career development are very much in the forefront of Gonzalez's mind coming into 2012, especially after having had a taste of F1 with the opportunity to take part in two consecutive Young Drivers' Tests in Abu Dhabi: in 2010 with the Lotus Racing T127 and last year in the T128.

"I had a very successful test with the F1 team in November where they provided me with all the right facilities and a great structure in which to learn," he said. "I am confident the technical team are strong and experienced and together we will create a good working environment. We have put together a very good package to help me develop and I am very happy to have this opportunity and to have a team such as this believe in me."

Despite his length of tenure in GP2 and GP2 Asia, Gonzalez has never won a race or even finished on a podium. His best race result was fourth place in the Spa-Francorchamps sprint race in 2010, and his best finish in a championship was 17th in the final GP2 Asia season last year. He admits that this year with Caterham is the time he really needs to raise his game.

"I feel I have matured a lot over the last season and have learnt from my past mistakes," he said. "My aim is to become a better athlete and person all round - In turn I believe this will make me a stronger racing driver capable of winning GP2 races. Hopefully this can be achieved this year."

Caterham Racing Team Manager Phil Spencer is keen to put the considerable combined series experience of Gonzalez and van der Garde to good use, especially as time for all the GP2 teams is now so tight as the start of the season fast approaches.

"The first race in Malaysia [on March 24-25] will be one of our two home races so no doubt there will be some added pressure there to perform well but everyone is motivated and keen to have a good season," he said.

First up are two three-day test sessions for all GP2 teams in Spain, beginning tomorrow with three days at Jerez.

"We just want to get testing and start the season," said Spencer. "The last few weeks have been very busy in factory after our freight back from Abu Dhabi was delayed, but the cars have been completely stripped down and everything has been checked so it's like we have two brand new cars sitting in the workshop ready for the start of the season."