Sauber takes Marciello on as reserve driver

2015 F1 season

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Ferrari development driver Raffaele Marciello has been appointed Sauber’s test and reserve driver for the 2015 season.

Marciello will participate in some Friday practice sessions next year. He joins a substantially overhauled line-up at the Ferrari-powered team, which has already replaced both its race drivers for 2015.

Ferrari has also confirmed Marciello will continue in GP2 for a second season, having finished eighth in this year’s championship.

Marciello, who won the European Formula Three championship last year, said Sauber “has a long tradition of building up excellent drivers”.

“I really think that this is the best choice for my future career,” he added.

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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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24 comments on “Sauber takes Marciello on as reserve driver”

  1. With Marussia gone, it seems Ferrari will go back to their other partner, Sauber. That brings the question, who pays more? Nasr or Ericson?

    1. @austus Who signed first? ;) The line up was all set to be Bianchi-Van der Garde, but then the accident changed all that, and the dominoes moved pretty quickly.

      1. Sources? I doubt it. Why didn’t they keep VDG then? He is not even a reserve driver right now. I do agree Bianchi could have been closer…but please tell me where you read it or if it is a personal opinion.

        1. That one is easy: Because both Nasr and Ericcson overbid VdGarde by a big enough chunk @mumito

          1. Not really, VDG bring in a LOT of money from McGregor

  2. The funny thing is: Marciello probably has the biggest potential of Sauber’s three drivers.

    1. @craig-o Indeed, although Nasr and Ericsson didn’t look too bad pre-GP2, matching Magnussen and Ricciardo (who both avoided it). This completes Marciello being promoted to fill the vacancy left by Jules Bianchi in the Ferrari junior line up. Also, it’s probably why 2016 at Ferrari has now become a viable prospect for Raikkonen, while Marciello probably gets a debut year at Sauber.

    2. Yes. Don’t rule out Nasr so fast. He can be a surprise.

    3. @craig-o I think you’re right about that. I hope his career does not take the Frinjs root, as in his case he probably deserved the seat better than Kob and Eric.

      1. @peartree Don’t worry, after Jules he is now first in line for Ferrari junior in F1.. after that Fuoco and Stroll. Even if Ferrari pick Vergne or Hulkenberg after Kimi, it’s still likely he might debut in F1 in 2016.

  3. With a price-cut on the engines which Marciello probably brings, and both Nasr and Ericsson paying tens of millions to drive, the engines are pretty much paid for. Nothing to blame then when Sauber goes bankrupt at the end of 2015 :P

    1. “The Alps are full of corpses of people that though the Swiss team will dissapear” Frank Tagliano. A little respect ME4ME…..Everybody ruled down Sauber in 2010….and 2011 was better…ending in a beautifull 2012 with 4 podiums and a super competitive C31.

      1. I do wish them the best for 2015, and hope they can be competitive. But truefully, all they have been in the news about this year is for financiel reasons. Previous wins do not save a team from bankruptcy

  4. @keithcollantine

    Ferrari has also confirmed Marciello will continue in GP2 for a second season with Racing Engineering

    There’s nothing in the official press release about him staying with Racing Engineering. His team has not been announced yet.

    1. Although there is nothing official, Marciello stated that between Sauber and GP2 his 2015 would be very busy.

      1. @mumito True, but once again, that does not specify the team. F1 Fanatic is the only place where I’ve seen that he’s been retained by Racing. There has been nothing yet to suggest that he will stick with the Spanish squad.

        1. @wsrgo You are right, didn’t notice that at first, that said staying with racing engineering would be a mistake as we all know what is the team to beat.

          1. @peartree True, and if the rumours are true, the French superteam might field a French superduo of Pierre Gasly and Esteban Ocon.

        2. Sky Sports F1 said that he will be retained by Racing Engineering too.

          “will also continue to race in GP2 with Racing Engineering.”

          1. @ambroserpm In that case, they should have focussed on it as an exclusive, because the official press release does not have that information. I was under the impression that news is not news unless it is official. Everything else is gossip.

  5. Good move by Sauber. I don’t know the “behind the scenes”, but all and all…I guess is a good move. As much I liked VDG… he only had one season @ Caterham (mediocre one) and fairly good backing. When given the car in FP1 he didn’t shine at all. Marciello can prove himself and can turn into a Sauber driver before wearing red.
    I really think is better reserve/test driver than GUT for Ferrari. He doesn’t have Esteban’s Mexican back up though.
    As a Sauber fan I’m encouraged with Nasr/Marciello, not that much with ERI. But I would rather see Sauber 2015 than the awful 2014. I want to forget names such as GUT, SUT, Sirotkin…..

  6. Sauber just flipped Sutil for Felipe Nasr (and Banco do Brasil) and now they’ve flipped their old 3rd driver Van der Garde for Marciello (and a stronger bond to Ferrari, perhaps).

    I can’t be more impressed with the way Monisha Kaltenborn has cleaned house and rebuilt the team this off-season.

  7. I’m glad to this.

  8. No one underlined the fact that Marciello is born in Switzerland and has a double nationality…for what I found…this has maybe played a role for Sauber when taking the decision to hire him…beside the fact that Marciello is very close to Ferrari…But frankly speaking, after the 2014 that was a disaster for Sauber, there was no other choice for Kaltenborn then to make a new start on the side of the pilot…and money wise…sorry to say..but no money no f1…this is a cruel reality…

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