Van der Garde joins Sauber

  • Last Updated: January 21 2014, 9:34 GMT

Giedo van der Garde has been announced as test and reserve driver at Sauber for the forthcoming season.

Giedo van der Garde: Has been recruited by Sauber
Giedo van der Garde: Has been recruited by Sauber

The news serves as confirmation that the Dutchman has been dropped by Caterham after only one season with the Leafield outfit.

Just one month ago, Sauber named 19-year-old Sergey Sirotkin as their test driver for the new season but the team have confirmed that the 28-year-old Van der Garde will drive in selected Practice One sessions as well "several" of the in-season tests in 2014.

"I consider this an important step in my career," van der Garde said.

"It is my goal to help the team with the development of the new car. But, of course, I am a racing driver, and I want to show the team and everybody else what I am capable of and that I deserve a race seat with the Sauber F1 Team in 2015.

After all, my ambition remains unchanged and I am highly motivated to succeed in Formula One, especially in the long term.

"I am very thankful to Caterham that they gave me a chance to get a taste of Formula 1. I enjoyed a fantastic season with the team and I have learned a lot. The experience gained will surely help me during the rest of my career.

"For now, I am really very excited to have signed a contract with the Sauber F1 Team. For every driver it is a dream to work for a well-established team such as Sauber. In recent years it has shown impressive results. I am really grateful for this opportunity and I will certainly do my upmost to succeed."

Sirotkin has very limited mileage in an F1 car and Team Principal Monisha Kaltenborn thinks having someone of van der Garde's experience will help the Swiss outfit.

"We are happy to have Giedo van der Garde on board," she said.

"He has four years' experience in GP2 and he drove one year in Formula 1. These are good credentials to work successfully with our team. Many times Giedo has shown his talent as a race driver. At the same time the team would like to support him to further develop his skills. Giedo has the right attitude to take the next step forward."

Adrian Sutil and Esteban Gutierrez were confirmed as Sauber's race drivers last year.

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