Pedro de la Rosa makes F1 comeback with BMW Sauber

Pedro de la Rosa joins BMW Sauber after seven years with McLaren

Pedro de la Rosa joins BMW Sauber after seven years with McLaren

BMW Sauber has confirmed Pedro de la Rosa will make a return to F1 in 2010 with the team.

De la Rosa will partner Japanese team mate Kamui Kobayashi.

De la Rosa said:

I always firmly believed I would be given another chance as a team driver. Since the number of test drives were radically reduced, this was what I was working towards.
Pedro de la Rosa

Peter Sauber expects de la Rosa’s experience to aid Kobayashi, who has made just two F1 starts:

We as a team stand to gain from his experience, and the same goes for young Kamui. The combination of a seasoned racer and an up-and-coming young driver has repeatedly proved a very fruitful one. I don?t expect either of them to disappoint in 2010. Of course it is also crucial that we provide them with a decent car; I feel positive about our in-house progress on that front too. We were able to continue work on our 2010 car as scheduled throughout the recent period of uncertainty.
Peter Sauber

The Spanish driver’s last F1 start was for McLaren at Interlagos in 2006. He spent half that season substituting for Juan Pablo Montoya.

According to Joe Saward, de la Rosa’s deal is being backed by a network of universities called Universia.

De la Rosa has had a patchy career in F1 which began when he scored a point on his debut for Arrows at Melbourne in 1999.

He spent two years with them and a further two with Jaguar. It’s fair to say he failed to capture the imagination of Spanish fans the way Fernando Alonso did when he had his breakthrough season for Renault in 2003, while de la Rosa was on the sidelines.

De la Rosa earned a reputation as a dependable test driver while at McLaren. He and Alonso were briefly team mates at McLaren in 2007, when both were implicated in the ‘spygate’ episode.

The expertise de la Rosa garnered as a test driver was put to use by the designers of the Motorland Aragon circuit, which I interviewed him about last year.

His years of experience will make him an excellent benchmark for Kobayashi. But you could have said the same about Nick Heidfeld, and in many ways it’s a surprise to see de la Rosa get the seat instead of the German, who has driven for the team in six seasons of F1.

Pedro de la Rosa joins BMW Sauber

Pedro de la Rosa at the BMW Sauber factory

Pedro de la Rosa at the BMW Sauber factory

Image (C) BMW Sauber

Advert | Go Ad-free

60 comments on Pedro de la Rosa makes F1 comeback with BMW Sauber

  1. YeaMon said on 19th January 2010, 20:57

    “Peter Sauber expects de la Rosa’s experience to aid Kobayashi, who has made jsut two F1 starts:”

    Typo in “just” Keith.

    I think this is a solid pickup for both sides. Pedro gets a ride that I really think will compete for points, and Sauber gets a driver that is very capable of driving an F1 car.

  2. Harvs said on 19th January 2010, 21:08

    Congrats Pedro, it seems that the testing ban has made him want to go racing again!

    hey Nick, i hope you have something that we dont know about because the options are running out

  3. Harvs said on 19th January 2010, 21:25

    will he still be testing the new McLaren then?

  4. Oliver said on 19th January 2010, 22:52

    ……”His years of experience will make him an excellent benchmark for Kobayashi. But you could have said the same about Nick Heidfeld, and in many ways it’s a surprise to see de la Rosa get the seat instead of the German, who has driven for the team in six seasons of F1″…..

    Lets not forget that Sauber had previously sacked Nick Heidfeld.

  5. Wow, didn’t see that coming ! I thought Quick Nick was a shoo in for the seat. I hope he gets a drive somewhere else, as I would be disappointed not to see him in F1 this year.

    Not entirely sold on PDLR. I can credit that he is a great tester & good for car set up, but racing? Not sure about that. Wouldn’t it have been better then to have him as the tester?

  6. He WILL be the tester, and be available with hopefully insightful feedback all season long on how to improve the car. Maybe another driver could generate more points, but if also brings needed cash it will be a win-win for the team.

  7. m0tion said on 20th January 2010, 3:07

    “Dependable” test driver? He was a sensation for McLaren. Great Sauber decision.

  8. Mahir C said on 20th January 2010, 6:10

    BMW Sauber? Isnt it just Sauber now?
    Now, what will Heidfeld do next year, USf1 maybe?
    Peter Windsor used to rate him high when he was a journalist.

  9. Go Pedro, go.
    Congratulations.

  10. Hairs said on 21st January 2010, 20:17

    Mystery solved, Santander are sponsoring him.

    http://f1.gpupdate.net/en/formula-1-news/226473/santander-sponsors-de-la-rosa/

    De LaRosa is by no means a bad pick for an experienced/rookie partnership, and he brings a lot of McLaren and Ferrari information ^H^H^H^H errrr… “development experience” with him. I’d expect him to do a good job in the races, and do wonders for Sauber with development and developing Kobayashi. Certainly a much better pick than Badoer was.

    As has been pointed out above, it’s amazing how few brits are on the grid given how they dominate the actual team landscape – but British companies don’t seem to want to sponsor any sportsman who’s not already winning. It falls to European companies to really push young drivers and support a range of drivers. Anthony Davidson must be sick right now.

  11. forza fisico, go get some seat in 2010,de la rosa has no shame to grab what fisi should be

Add your comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

All comments must abide by the comment policy. Comments may be moderated.
Want to post off-topic? Head to the forum.
See the FAQ for more information.