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SOTTO On Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Van der Garde joins Caterham
Van der Garde joins Caterham
Giedo van der Garde has found his way into F1 having being signed as Caterham's official reserve driver for 2012.
Van der Garde previously flirted with F1 back in 2007 and was linked to a Virgin Racing drive for the 2011 season. However, little came of any of it and the Dutchman remained in GP2 bidding his time.
Now Caterham have handed him what could be his big break, signing him as their official reserve driver. The 26-yer-old will also take part in pre-season testing and contest a number of Friday practice sessions as the team evaluates his potential.
"I'm very happy to become a part of the Caterham F1 Team family today and I'm very excited about the next step in my career within Formula 1. The team is fresh, with some fantastic people here," van der Garde said.
"Tony Fernandes is extremely ambitious and he has brought in a lot of very good people in to help grow this team for future success. I'm looking forward to learning and moving forward with the team, in and out of the car.
"It's great for Holland that we again have a Dutch driver who is connected to Formula 1. Being the only Dutch driver now is very good for the sport in Holland, as the interest was perhaps on the decline since the Verstappen years, however I hope to generate the same excitement for my country and really bring Formula 1 to them.
"I feel that the team as a whole is very ambitious. They appear to be very positive people and I think they are building up, growing and developing very quickly. I think this year they will be strong contenders!
"We'll see after the test but I really have a feeling that it's a big family here and they are pushing very hard to move up the grid.
"I feel very strong now, I'm fit, and I'm mentally ready. Of course I've spent a lot of time driving with guys who are now in Formula 1 and I feel I'm ready for this. I'd like to thank McGregor and everybody who has supported me in my career and for helping me take this next exciting step."
Team boss Tony Fernandes added: "His performances in GP2, particularly in 2011, mark Giedo out as one of motorsport's brightest prospects, and securing him as Reserve Driver is a real coup for our team.
"I am sure he will flourish on and off track, and we wish him all the best as he takes the next step into Formula 1 with us."


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