Williams tester, Narain Karthikeyan has confirmed that he has a contract with the Grove-based outfit for next season - and that he is hoping to get behind the wheel as a race driver.

Karthikeyan has been with Williams in a test capacity for the last two years, following his debut Formula 1 season with Jordan-Midland back in 2005.

Now the Indian is hoping to get back into a race seat in 2008, although whether he will replace Nico Rosberg or Alex Wurz, is not clear, although the former does have a contract for next season.

Speaking to the Hindustan Times he added that if the Williams drive doesn't happen, then he will continue racing in the A1 Grand Prix World Cup of Motorsport.

"I have got a contract with Williams for next year and am hoping to get behind the wheels as a driver," he revealed to the online version of the 'paper. "If it doesn't materialise though, I have got a commitment with the A1 Grand Prix and would race in it."

While Karthikeyan is an attractive option in terms of the likely sponsors he will draw in from India, his performances back in 2005 were not exactly out of this world. Although he scored five points, that was a result of a fourth place finish at the six-car farce that was that year's US Grand Prix. His other best finishes were two eleventh places in Malaysia and Belgium.

Whether then he realistically has a chance is open to debate - certainly there are a number of other drivers' available that on performance alone would seem a better bet, including (in addition to Wurz), Vitantonio Liuzzi, who has been left without a drive after Scuderia Toro Rosso's decision to go for Sebastian Vettel and Sebastien Bourdais next season.

Williams meanwhile have refused to comment on the story.



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