Sebastien Buemi, Toro Rosso, Abu Dhabi, 2011

Buemi becomes reserve driver for Red Bull

2012 F1 seasonPosted on | Author Keith Collantine

Sebastien Buemi, Toro Rosso, Abu Dhabi, 2011
Buemi lost his Toro Rosso seat at the end of 2011

Red Bull have announced Sebastien Buemi will be their reserve driver for 2012.

Buemi drove for Toro Rosso from 2009 to 2011, but was dropped at the end of last season.

Buemi said: “It?s good to remain with Red Bull for another year and have this opportunity with the World Championship winning team.

“I would prefer to be driving at the races of course, but working with Red Bull Racing on the development of their car and providing them with feedback throughout the season is the next best thing.”

Christian Horner added: “It was entirely logical for Sebastien to continue with Red Bull having been a member of the Junior Team since 2004.

“He already knows the team well from his time with us in 2008 and has gained significant race experience over the past three years. He will complete important test and simulation work for us throughout the year and will be in attendance at each grand prix.”

Update: Toro Rosso have confirmed Buemi will also be their reserve driver.

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Image ?? Red Bull/Getty images

129 comments on “Buemi becomes reserve driver for Red Bull”

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  1. Oh yeah totally. I actually remember a few times where he had done something notable i dont remember buemi doing anything special. ok, so its settled. alguersuari to ferrari for reserve with option to replace massa halfway thru 2012. lol

    1. heck id even take sutil before buemi.

  2. Seems like a logical approach and I think that Buemi is at least a safe pair of hands to bring home some points if the worst case scenario with Vettel or Webber happens.

    It’s a shame we couldn’t really evaluate his end of season due to the problems he was having but RBR have made the right choice.

    1. Jack Leslie (@)
      6th January 2012, 14:30

      I think he will be a key member to the team and obviously he wants to be driving the car, but its probably the only way to stay in F1 for the people who have been kicked out.

  3. Sensible option. 3rd drivers are rarely used and if Buemi is going to be used it’ll be because of an injury or something and in which case he’s the perfect candidate; he’s at least as quick as Alg, has experience but is very solid. He’d get the points in a situation like that so he’s good to have onboard just in case. It’s a bit tough for Buemi but if he can’t get any other offers then at leats he’s close to RBR but it seems he is off their radar for the future stars. It would be pointless to give this position to a rookie in their programme with no experience. The seats they have are valuable so if something goes wrong they’ll need consistency.

    As for Jaime, he had almost the same amount of time as Buemi but much better luck yet was all over the place. He was never really good. Sometimes he could be very quick but it was often after a horrendous qualifying session so RBR can’t count on him. What Jaime should do is go into GP2. He doesn’t have a place in F1 right now except HRT and that’s if he’s lucky. He was chucked into F1 and was out of his depth so he should take that precious experience, go to GP2 or a similar series and increase his skills for another crack at F1 like Grosjean.

  4. I believe that’s a good decision by Red Bull. Buemi’s not really the next big thing Red Bull are looking for, that’s why he lost his Toro Rosso seat. But they are aware that he’s a solid driver and that’s what they need if Vettel or Webber have to skip a race or two for injury (let’s hope not). And it is important for their championship if the replacement is capable of getting a solid result in the car, which Buemi is.

    That’s how I see this anyway, I can’t see any other reason for them to sign him for that role.

    1. Jack Leslie (@)
      6th January 2012, 14:31

      Its for sure better than getting a reserve drive at Toro Rosso, so its a step up from that anyway.

  5. Buemi will also be the reserve driver for Toro Rosso – have updated the story accordingly.

    1. @KeithCollantine Could cause a problem if an RBR and an STR collide with each other and both drivers have to miss a race.

      1. @McLarenFanJamm they have always used the same system. The reserve driver is the same dor both teams…

        1. @celeste actually, they haven’t.

          06 and 07 the RBR reserves were Robert Doornbos and Michael Ammermuller. STR had Neel Jani.

          08 the RBR reserve was Buemi (so he’s gone backwards) and STR had Hartley.

          09 and 10 admittedly, they shared reserve drivers (although there were three!) Alguersuari/Hartley/Coulthard in 09, Hartley/Ricciardo/Coulthard in 10.

          11 RBR had Ricciardo as reserve, STR had both Ricciardo and Vergne, who are now team-mates.

    2. In terms of rules, is there a “official” designation via the FIA as a “reserve driver” and is there a restriction there can only be one? I would think any driver with the FIA license could be called in by any team to do reserve driver duties (simulator, Friday practice, etc.). Do they have to sack a current reserve driver to bring in another to do some of their duties?

      1. Do they have to sack a current reserve driver to bring in another to do some of their duties?

        No, they do not. When Sergio Perez decided not to take part in last year’s Canadian Grand Prix – he was suffering from headaches and dizziness after his crash in Monaco – Sauber called upon Pedro de la Rosa to race. Up until then, de la Rosa had not been a part of the team, and their official test and reserve driver was Esteban Gutierrez.

  6. It’s somewhat strange that Toro Rosso drop him but he remains with Red Bull. He was not chosen for Vergne and Ricciardo, yet he will be chosen if Webber or Vettel will have to miss a race.

  7. @hays33d and @prisoner-monkeys they brought De La Rosa in on loan from McLaren!! He had to take part in FP2 in his McLaren overalls!

  8. Jack Leslie (@)
    6th January 2012, 14:29

    Surprised Alguersuari did not get a role like this or similar but we will have to see, for all we know he may of already signed of be negotiating a deal. Hate to see him go to HRT though, what a waste of talent.

  9. I’d prefer to see Alguesuari in this job. For me a more promising driver and also had some really good results this year. Showed good pace in quali but was unlucky in races (Spa anyone).

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