Sebastien Loeb tests GP2 car ahead of possible Abu Dhabi F1 debut (Pictures)

Posted on | Author Keith Collantine

Sebastien Loeb could make an F1 debut at Abu Dhabi
Sebastien Loeb could make an F1 debut at Abu Dhabi

Reigning World Rally Champion Sebastien Loeb tested a GP2 car at Jerez in Spain today.

The French five-times title winner drove for the DPR team amid rumours he wil drive for Toro Rosso in the F1 season-ending Abu Dhabi Grand Prix.

Loeb was slowest of the 25 drivers in action at the circuit today.

His 1’28.114s lap was 2.2s off the day’s fastest time, set by Swede Marcus Ericcson driving for title-winners ART.

Loeb, however, was driving for a team that hasn’t won a race since 2005. He was 0.8s slower than fellow GPR driver Michael Herck, who has 32 GP2 starts to his name.

Testing a GP2 car is an obvious way for Loeb to get some single-seater mileage ahead of what could be a headline-grabbing one-off appearance in F1, most likely in the place of Jaime Alguersuari.

If he does drive in the race it would be just one week after the title-deciding round of the World Rally Championship. He is one point behind Mikko Hirvonen heading into the Rally of Great Britain.

I don’t believe a reigning or former World Rally Champion has ever competed in an F1 race before, but feel free to set me right on that in the comments! Colin McRae, world rally champion in 1995, sampled Martin Brundle’s Jordan in 1996, but did not compete in a race.

Loeb has gone up against F1 drivers in the past – he beat David Coulthard in the final of last year’s Race of Champions.

And he has already competed against one F1 driver this year – Kimi Raikkonen, who drove in the Rally Finland. Raikkonen had an impressive run before crashing out. Would Loeb do as well in F1? Have your say below.

Sebastien Loeb’s GP2 test

Images (C) GP2 Media Service / Alastair Staley and Malcolm Griffiths