Rossi and Ma get Caterham practice opportunities

2013 F1 season

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Alexander Rossi and Ma Qing Hua will be Caterham’s reserve drivers for 2013 and drive for the team in practice sessions.

Both drivers will make appearances for the team in first practice sessions during the season. Rossi’s first drive will be at the Spanish Grand Prix, where he also drove for the team last year, and he will make other appearances during the season.

Chinese driver Ma will participate in the first practice session of the Chinese Grand Prix. Ma, who made four practice appearances for HRT last year, will also race for Caterham’s GP2 team.

Team principal Cyril Abiteboul said: “I’m very pleased to welcome Ma into our team. Alexander continues his development with us into 2013 and his promotion is a reflection of the investment we are making in him for the future”.

“Ma joins us with previous F1 experience from 2012, and will play a key role in helping our GP2 team achieve their 2013 goals. We are looking forward to helping him develop his talents, both in the F1 and GP2 environments, and giving Chinese fans a figurehead to support on track throughout the year ahead.”

Ma, who became the first Chinese driver to participate in an official F1 session last year, said: “I know the fans at home will be really excited to see me race in GP2 and with the F1 work I also have ahead of me, China can be proud that it continues to have a driver involved in motor racing at the very highest level.”

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Keith Collantine
Lifelong motor sport fan Keith set up RaceFans in 2005 - when it was originally called F1 Fanatic. Having previously worked as a motoring...

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16 comments on “Rossi and Ma get Caterham practice opportunities”

  1. [Ma Qing] will play a key role in helping our GP2 team achieve their 2013 goals.

    Paying the bills and finishing where the F1 team will finish this year?

    1. And if Ma’s presence in the team injects them with enough cash that they can afford to take a second, quality driver – like Tom Dillmann or Robin Frijns – that they would otherwise be unable to afford, then how have they done anything wrong?

      1. Dillmann or Frijns would be great, but if it turns out to be Texeira or Canamasas…

        1. Canamasas isn’t that bad. He had a few silly moments last year, but did show some raw speed on occasion. He might not be the best man for the job, but he’s certainly not the worst.

    2. petebaldwin (@)
      1st March 2013, 11:43

      Well the can’t put anyone too quick in the GP2 car or it’ll likely lap faster than the CT03!

  2. This means that Canamasas is almost certain to take the second GP2 seat, as Rossi’s busy year will probably prevent him from getting racing opportunities on the same weekend.

    1. Drivers aren’t allowed to compete in a GP2 race and drive in an F1 session on the same weekend, so that rules Rossi out.

      1. petebaldwin (@)
        1st March 2013, 11:45

        Is there any reason why that rule exists? I assume something must have happened to cause that rule to come into existance?

        1. @petebaldwin so that F1 drivers don’t drive in GP2 and essentially rule over the series.

          1. Could it also be to do with getting a feel for the circuit and the prevailing conditions? Even though the cars are different, just knowing the track, where there could be oil / standing water etc etc could really help a driver.

    2. but I can remember something with Neel Jani if im correct who did drive in 2006 for Arden in the gp2 and at the same weekend he did friday tests for Toro Rosso, so is there really a rule that says f1(test drivers) cant do gp2 at the same weekend?

      1. The rule may have been introduced after 2006.

        And it’s always possible that the organisers may be willing to bend the rules in extreme situations, like when Sergio Perez couldn’t drive in Canada because of his concussion (I know the team took Pedro de la Rosa instead of Esteban Gutierrez on that occasion, but you see my point).

  3. WilliamB (@william-brierty)
    1st March 2013, 11:06

    Why Ma? Why? Can’t we for a proper Chinese talent to come along?

    1. Can’t we for a proper Chinese talent to come along?

      Maybe you can, but Caterham evidently feel either that they can’t wait, or that Ma meets their definition of talented.

  4. Is it bad that I immediately thought of Valentino when I saw the headline? Alexander has fallen off my radar a bit recently.

  5. Sea-Bass Vettel
    2nd March 2013, 7:12

    i met rossi at the usgp, total jerk. all the other drivers were nice though. even raikkonen…….

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