After announcing their Formula 1 line-up, Caterham confirms the signing of Rio Haryanto and Alexander Rossi’s comeback.
Alexander Rossi finished ninth in the standings last season –becoming the rookie of the year–, including a win and three podium finishes, and he will be a title contender in 2014. Moreover, the American will continue being Caterham’s reserve driver in Formula 1, and it could give him a full time seat in the following years.
Rossi said: “I am pleased to be back with Caterham Racing for 2014 fighting for a GP2 Championship. My 2013 program had some changes which meant I missed the pre-season tests and a couple of the early GP2 races, however, throughout the season the team and I made some big progress and by Abu Dhabi we were definitely one of the cars to beat. This continued in the post-season tests and I’m quite confident about the pace in 2014. As returning Caterham F1 Team Reserve Driver my duties will continue with various F1 outings and as the main simulator driver at Leafield and on track Reserve, when my GP2 commitments allow. I have to thank everyone involved at Caterham and Team Rossi for making this happen. We have a fantastic chance to win the GP2 title in 2014, while the F1 team achieves its goals of moving forward. This is an important era for all of us, as the sport enters a new generation. What a great way to start 2014!”
Rio Haryanto joins the team before scoring his first podium ever in GP2 last year, although he finished 19th in the standings. The Indonesian will fight for podium finishes this season and will try to graduate to Formula 1 in the future.
Haryanto stated: “It is a great feeling to sign with Caterham Racing for my 2014 GP2 campaign. After such a successful post season test with the team in Abu Dhabi and the possible Formula One opportunities, this was the obvious choice for me. The team atmosphere immediately filled me with confidence and I am sure that this new chapter, with a new team is going to bring success.I am also looking forward teaming up with Alexander Rossi. We are both strong Championship contenders and with our GP2 experience, we will work together to fight for both the team and driver Championships. My ultimate goal is to finish the season as high as possible in the 2014 GP2 Championship and give myself the best possible chance of a full time Formula One seat in 2015”.
Mia Sharizman, Team Principal, expressed: “I am delighted to announce that Alexander will continue with us into 2014, and that Rio is joining our team. This announcement also means that we can focus on our 2014 preparations much earlier than we have been able to in previous years. Our team has undergone a number of engineering changes since the end of the 2013 season which we believe gives us the capability to have our best season to date, and to build on our previous Championship results. Our plan for Alexander in 2014 is part of a two year GP2 programme. After finishing 2013 as top rookie it is now time for him to mount a challenge for the Championship, and with the experience he has gained and the increased support he will have in 2014, I believe that the Championship is a realistic target. Racing alongside Alexander will be Rio Haryanto. Having Rio joining the Caterham family is the result of a lot of hard work over the last two years, in which time we have seen Rio develop into one of the most promising Asian racing drivers in the world. His experience in GP2 will help the team develop further and having two strong, consistent and quick race drivers will help us achieve our goals”.