May 11 (GMM) Lucas di Grassi mentioned a very famous name when asked about his struggle to return to Formula One.
Just one season into his career, the Brazilian lost his Virgin seat, but he remains one of the sport's most highly respected test drivers, and was hard at work for tyre supplier Pirelli earlier this week at Jerez.
"I talked to some teams about competing in 2012, but they were all asking for contributions from sponsors," di Grassi revealed, according to Brazil's Globo.
"It's very hard to compete against the name Senna for sponsors in Brazil," he added, referring to Bruno Senna's lucrative deals that secured him the race seat at Williams this season.
Di Grassi, and Jaime Alguersuari, will return to the wheel of Pirelli's 2010 Renault test car later this year at Spa, Monza and Barcelona.