Christian Klien has moved a step closer to a return to a Formula 1 race seat after completing a successful day of testing with the Spyker team at Spa.

The Honda test driver joined the team for the final day of the three day session in the Ardennes as Spyker continues the hunt for a replacement for Christijan Albers, who lost his drive earlier in the week following the non-payment from one of his sponsors.

On his first run in the car, Klien completed 63 laps over the course of the day as he completed a programme focused on tyres, set-up and brake system work, while also acclimatising to his new surroundings. Although his best time left him eleventh of the eleven drivers on track, the Austrian was happy with how the day had gone.

"Obviously it was a new team, new car and a new seat and it took some time to get used to it, but there is a good bunch of people here and I felt at home straight away," he said. "We did a lot of mileage, but obviously today's focus was to get used to the car and how the engine and gearbox works. I think it all went well, there is potential in the car and I enjoyed the day testing with Spyker. Thanks again to Honda Racing F1 Team for allowing me this opportunity."

Chief race and test engineer Dominic Harlow was also happy with how Klien had settled into the team and said it was a productive way to end the test - the highlight of which saw Adrian Sutil set the fifth quickest time on Wednesday.

"Christian's programme today condensed a lot of work into a short time," he said. "The testing included tyre evaluation, brake system, and control system changes as well as familiarising the driver with the car and systems. The team welcomed the chance to test with Christian; he is a professional and contributed to the day from the start.

"It was a very interesting day, and apart from a minor technical problem stopping the car on the track for the first time in three days, it was a very productive way to round off the test."

 

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