Luiz Razia, Lotus, Abu Dhabi, 2011

Razia gets Force India Young Drivers’ Test chance

2012 F1 testingPosted on | Author Keith Collantine

Luiz Razia, Lotus, Abu Dhabi, 2011Luiz Razia will drive for Force India in this week’s Young Drivers’ Test at Magny-Cours, the team has announced.

The Brazilian drove for Lotus in last year’s test and in practice for the Chinese and Brazilian Grands Prix. He lies second in the GP2 standings will drive the team’s car at Magny-Cours tomorrow.

“I?m glad that Sahara Force India has given me this great opportunity,” said Razia. “It?s a chance to work with an established team and I?m sure I will learn a lot from the experience.”

“I?ve raced at the Magny-Cours circuit before in the junior categories and enjoy the track. It?s very smooth with some quick corners so it will be a good venue for testing. My objective is simply to follow the programme and help the team as much as possible.”

Ferrari development driver Jules Bianchi, who has driven for the team in Friday practice sessions this year, will drive the car on Wednesday. Rodolfo Gonzalez, who drove for Caterham in the Mugello test in May, will take over the car for the final day of the three-day test.

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14 comments on “Razia gets Force India Young Drivers’ Test chance”

  1. Still suprised no one called Valsecchi: okay, he has half-an-year’s extra experience (he was injured for part of the 2008 season) but his overall GP2 results are better than Razia’s and as team mates Davide had the upper hand, as he has now that they are rivals. He had a bad period at Addax and iSport, but those days are over now, he has one of the best cars and is delivering.
    Same goes for Filippi: he had bad periods in his GP2 experience (but he scored many podiums for Super Nova, who became backmarkers once he left) but he has now proven that even one year after his last single-seater experience he has lost no pace at all, and beat everyone else to win at Monza. He probably had difficulties in getting to grips with the Dallaras, but now he’s ready for F1, as he’s shown. Why should old results have such an important effect?
    On the other hand, Gonzalez should be nowhere other than in karts. His season has been appalling: he has one points finish to van der Garde’s one win, 5 podiums and one pole position and is 135 points, 16 positions behind his team mate in the standings. Silly mistakes and just plain slowness have cost the team, who debuted last season but still took a win and a pole, a rise in performance for this season in the team’s championship.

    1. @Fixy Indeed, it’s a big shame that Gonzalez gets such a rare and valuable experience that should be reserved for those who really deserve it.

      1. Perhaps opportunity rather than experience…

        1. Shocking indeed,as gonzalez has done nothing,except for perhaps obtaining Hugo Chavez’s backing…

      2. Isn’t Gonzals there just to pay the bills? I would hope someone else is already talking with Valsecchi (with him now driving for DAMS, maybe he is on the cards at Lotus?)

  2. Busy few days for Force India then. Bianchi and Razia fair enough, Gonzalez not so much.

  3. Gonzalez getting a test is a utter outrage. There is no reasonable explanation for him getting a drive over most of the GP2 drivers or even the top GP3 guys. But wait he has a big check book and is probably funding the whole event for Force India because he certainly is not there on merit.

    Think Bianchi has underachieved and his chances may be running out to ever get in F1, Never stood out in previous tests as a future star. Good for Razia who has been much improved in GP2 even with a few dodgy weekends in Belgium and Italy.

    Feel sorry for the two Italians who deserve to have some F1 the most over the past year. Valsecchi and Fillipi. Both are seemingly on the road to joining fellow Italian Giorgio Pantano in a road to nowhere

    1. @mrgrieves

      Think Bianchi has underachieved and his chances may be running out to ever get in F1

      I agree he’s underachieved (in GP2), but he has a good chance of landing an F1 seat I reckon. Mallya has already said Bianchi would get the seat if Hulkenberg or di Resta moved on, which is very much possible for next year, and he’s well in the title fight of the Formula Renault 3.5, which probably has more talent than GP2 this year.

  4. wonder when will Force India test Indian drivers. Its their 5th season, still not a single Indian has driven a VJM

    1. They are not obliged to test Indian drivers. And none of the present Indian drivers are talented enough for F1 anyway.

    2. Drivers like who? Parthiva Sureshwaran? Armaan Ibrahim?

  5. I think Razia is cut from the same cloth as Valsecchi: only really competitive because the GP2 talent pool is pretty shallow this year.

    There’s a whole host of other drivers that I would rather see take part, such as:

    Rio Haryanto, Nigel Melker, Felipe Nasr, James Calado and Esteban Gutierrez.

    Mitch Evans, Tio Ellinas, Robert Visoiu, Antonio Flix da Costa, Tamas Pal Kiss and Kevin Ceccon.

    Formula Renault 3.5
    Kevin Korjus, Robin Frijns, Alexander Rossi, Kevin Magnussen and Marco Sorenson.

    Formula 3
    Felix Serralles, Jazeman Jaafar, Daniel Juncadella, Raffaele Marciello, Pascal Wehrlein and Riccardo Agostini.

    Sergey Sirotkin (Auto GP), Robert Wickens and Roberto Merhi (DTM).

    1. I’d put Daniel Abt as one of the drivers in GP3 as well.

      The stand out from that list for me has to be Nasr. He’s an exceptional talent and I would be surprised to see him not picked up.
      Da Costa too as he is blindingly fast, along with Abt, and Evans is very competitive and consistent and does have speed, but I do think that Abt and Da Costa are the faster drivers. But would agree with seeing basically any of those drivers in F1 over Razia and Valsecchi.

      1. I’d agree with that and put Calado in, but remove Gutierrez, who seems to be getting more and more erratic…

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