Sauber have finalised their 2014 driver line-up by confirming that Esteban Gutiérrez will stay on for the 2014 season, completing the driver line-up together with Adrian Sutil. Russian Sergey Sirotkin meanwhile will take up the team's test driver role in the upcoming season.
Mexican Gutierrez first tested with the team at Jerez in late 2009. The following year the talented youngster was signed as ‘affiliated driver’, and 2013 saw him in his debut season as a Formula One driver finishing 16th as the best rookie in the drivers’ championship.
Monisha Kaltenborn, Team Principal: “We are pleased Esteban will drive for us in 2014, because we believe he is a talented young racing driver. Last season he experienced first hand how hard it can be for a rookie to step into Formula One. Nevertheless, throughout the season he improved significantly in qualifying as well as in the races and finished the year as the best rookie in the drivers’ championship. Often the results didn’t fully reflect his performances. I am confident Esteban will be able to use his experiences to gain results, and this will be helped by the fact he is very well acquainted with every member of the race team.”
Esteban Gutiérrez: “I am happy to be able to continue as a driver for the Sauber F1 Team. It was a steep learning curve last season, but by working closely with the team I was able to improve continuously. It will be my fourth year with the team, the second as a racing driver, and I feel comfortable in taking the next step. The technical challenges in 2014 will be massive. Therefore it will be even more important to know well the people you are working with. I will do my very best to improve even more and support the team the best way I can.”
Sergey Sirotkin meanwhile take up the team's test drive role for 2014. He joined the team in August 2013 and has been gaining more and more insight into Formula One since then. He has spent several days at the factory in Hinwil and has been working with the engineers. In late September he drove a demo-run at the new track in Sochi, which will host the Russian Grand Prix in 2014. In October he tested a 2009 Ferrari at Fiorano. The Sauber F1 Team’s aim is to prepare Sergey for his debut in Formula One.
Monisha Kaltenborn, Team Principal: “We have been working with Sergey since August, and he has been able to gain more and more insight into Formula One. Now he is taking the next step towards the top level of motorsport in his new role as a test driver. Our experience of him is as a very focused, calm and talented driver. Now we will continue to support him, including obtaining his super license. Our goal remains to prepare him for a debut in Formula One.”
Sergey Sirotkin: “It’s a big chance for me to become the test driver for the Sauber F1 Team. I will work hard to improve myself and to extract the maximum out of this opportunity. Formula One is very complex, so it is important to get an opportunity like this. My main focus next year, however, will be the World Series by Renault, which is very competitive. This will give me the chance to prepare even better in order to be ready for the next big step.”