Pedro de la Rosa will return to F1 with HRT in 2012, the team has confirmed.
He will join the team on a two-year contract starting in January.
De la Rosa made his last start in Montreal for Sauber as a substitute for Sergio Perez. He also drove for the team in 2010 before being replaced by Nick Heidfeld mid-way through the season.
He returned to his testing role at McLaren at the beginning of this year.
“This is a very important step in my sporting career and one of the most meditated ones I’ve taken,” said de la Rosa.
“I’m at a very good stage in terms of maturity and am prepared to take on this challenge, which motivates me hugely.
“When deciding on joining this project, for me there were three decisive factors: my desire to return to the active competition, the fact that HRT is a Spanish team and getting to know the people leading this project, Luis Perez-Sala being amongst them. I’m here to work hard, with modesty and humility, accepting where we are now but keeping in mind where we want to be in two years’ time.
“For me, this is the time to put into practice everything that I have learnt over the years at international top level racing teams so that we can grow together. I am proud that Spain has an F1 team and that I have this opportunity to be its driver. I can only show my gratitude towards HRT for having trusted in me for this.
“Lastly, I can’t forget to thank McLaren for allowing me to take this step. I have been very happy over the eight seasons I spent with them, growing as a driver and person. Without them I wouldn’t be here today.”
HRT team principal Colin Kolles said: “Apart from being a great person he is an experienced driver as his career and prestige in Formula 1 prove. I give him my most sincere welcome.
“I am sure that he will adapt perfectly and that together we will achieve great things.”
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