INDIANAPOLIS, Monday, May 30, 2005 - Formula One is heading for to North America for a double-header with the Canadian Grand Prix on June 12 in Montreal and the United States Grand Prix on June 19 at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway. California's...
INDIANAPOLIS, Monday, May 30, 2005 - Formula One is heading for to North America for a double-header with the Canadian Grand Prix on June 12 in Montreal and the United States Grand Prix on June 19 at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway.
California's Scott Speed could participate as a test driver in both events. If that happens, he would become the first driver from the United States to take part in a Grand Prix weekend since Michael Andretti finished third in the 1993 Italian Grand Prix.
Speed would not race but instead work in a testing role as the third driver for Red Bull Racing in the Friday practice sessions in Montreal and Indianapolis. The rules permit teams that finished fifth or lower in the previous year's Constructors Championship to run a third car and driver in the two Friday practice sessions of a Grand Prix.
Red Bull has alternated Christian Klien and Vitantonio Liuzzi in the third-driver testing role but is seriously considering putting Speed in the car for the two North American F1 races.
"We will give Speed a test at Silverstone (England) on Wednesday (June 1) in an F1 car," Red Bull Team Principal Christian Horner said. "After that, we will decide if he will be our third driver in Canada and Indianapolis."
This will be Speed's second time in a F1 car. He greatly impressed the team when he tested a F1 car earlier this year.
"All the seat time you can get in a F1 car is helpful," Speed said of his upcoming test. "It is quite a different driving style to the GP2 cars, so it requires experience."
Speed is one of the leading stars of the Red Bull Driver Search program that aims to promote talented young U.S. drivers on the path to F1. He is racing in the new GP2 series, the final stepping-stone before Formula One, this year and has three podium finishes.
If Speed gets the chance to drive a F1 car in Montreal and at his home Grand Prix in Indianapolis, he will be delighted.
"It is quite exciting," he said. "It's great: F1 and the whole crowd and all the things that go with it are awesome, but at the end of the day you are still trying to go fast."