Berthon joins Caterham as development driver

2014 F1 season

Nathanael Berthon, HRT, Abu Dhabi, 2011GP2 driver Nathanael Berthon has joined Caterham’s new driver development programme.

Christijan Albers, who took over as Caterham’s team principal following the sale of the team last week, said Berthon is “an exciting young talent with a proven track record in the feeder series for F1″.

Berthon previously drove for the now-defunct HRT F1 team at the 2011 young drivers’ test (pictured).

“As he already has F1 experience he fits very neatly into our team,” Albers continued. “We will work closely with him to help him reach his full potential and are all excited about seeing him continue to grow as a driver, in and out of the cockpit.”

The 25-year-old Frenchman is currently in his third season of GP2, driving for Venezuela GP Lazarus.

Another of Caterham’s junior drivers, Will Stevens, has been testing for them today at Silverstone. Two of Berthon’s GP2 rivals, Julian Leal and Rio Haryanto, will drive for the team tomorrow.

In addition to them Caterham has already run Robin Frijns and Alexander Rossi in Formula One practice sessions this year.

2014 F1 season


Browse all 2014 F1 season articles

Image © HRT

Advert | Go Ad-free

28 comments on Berthon joins Caterham as development driver

  1. Rigi (@rigi) said on 8th July 2014, 16:12

    money talks. what a shame.

  2. I can only be surprised.
    As a Frenchman, I can say Berthon is the least convincing of my fellow countrymen who is racing in a highly-rated category.
    I was full of hopes for him few years away, but he faded away.

  3. Osvaldas31 (@osvaldas31) said on 8th July 2014, 16:19

    Why Caterham need so many development drivers, if they won’t be able to give them track time? Of course, money are involved here, but sometimes enough is enough.

  4. JackySteeg (@jackysteeg) said on 8th July 2014, 16:21

    So is Caterham’s F1 team still connected to the GP2 team and their young driver program?

  5. craig-o (@craig-o) said on 8th July 2014, 16:25

    Berthon? He hasn’t exactly set the world alight in GP2…

  6. R.J. O'Connell (@rjoconnell) said on 8th July 2014, 16:26

    I can’t see the point here since Berthon has one foot in the door of endurance racing already.

  7. wsrgo (@wsrgo) said on 8th July 2014, 16:29

    Proven track record? Yup, 3 podiums in GP2 in 3 years, 2 WSR wins in 2 years, and 1 win in Formula Renault Eurocup.
    He has indeed set the world alight. Max Verstappen move over, Berthon is the real deal!! (sarcastic)

  8. Lewis McMurray (@celicadion23) said on 8th July 2014, 16:33

    He must have deep pockets, he’s currently 25th in the championship with no points. Did manage to win a race last year but that was one of only two points finishes. In what universe is that F1 calibre???

    • R.J. O'Connell (@rjoconnell) said on 8th July 2014, 16:37

      Well, I’d think Berthon would be a little higher up if he wasn’t driving for The Vast Black Hole of Lazarus. Conor Daly is faring little better as his teammate, and Daly is a much higher rated prospect.

  9. Breno (@austus) said on 8th July 2014, 17:00

    Third season and 0 points! No wonder Caterham is a backmarker.

  10. Younger Hamii (@younger-hamii) said on 8th July 2014, 17:11

    For a driver development programme, I would expect a team to recruit promising drivers competing in a grass-roots category like Formula Ford/Renault/BMW and maybe F3, a seasoned GP2 driver without an outstanding track record in the main feeder series to F1 wouldn’t sound like the ideal candidate.

    • Iestyn Davies (@fastiesty) said on 9th July 2014, 21:22

      Caterham actually had a junior program full of talent, all drivers being title winners, until Fernandes sold up; now pay drivers are being recruited. But as WilliamB said below, it’s realistic, as they need to pay the bills in any way possible.

  11. Jack (@jmc200) said on 8th July 2014, 17:37

    To be fair to Berthon he’s driving for a terrible team in GP2 (Conor Daly’s not doing much better) and he hasn’t driven for a really good team since 2012. But I don’t understand what he’s doing here, since he’s already started racing in LMP2, surely he’s be better off doing that?

  12. AdrianMorse (@adrianmorse) said on 8th July 2014, 18:47

    Caterham has more development drivers than Mercedes has technical chiefs!

    I can understand Caterham’s aim of earning as much money from their driver [bank balance] development program, but what I don’t understand is that drivers (and more importantly, their sponsors) keep falling for this trick. Of course, their have been examples of teams training young drivers in a third driver capacity (Bottas at Williams, Hulkenberg at Force India), but this year Caterham (and to a lesser extent, Sauber), have so many drivers affiliated with them that for one individual driver it’s not likely to end up in a race seat. Also, it’s not as if they’re vying for a seat at Mercedes. I mean, who would want to drive for Caterham now?

  13. Jay Menon (@jaymenon10) said on 9th July 2014, 0:22

    Hey Albers…here’s 200 quid, can I have go in one of your cars?

  14. I showed promise in the Championship on my computer thus all I need is money….. (Not shakespear)

  15. WilliamB (@william-brierty) said on 9th July 2014, 8:53

    At least Caterham are reverting to being realistic with their junior drivers, so whilst seeing Berthon and Leal on the outer edges of F1 is rather painful, at least Caterham will no longer be falsely waving a carrot in front of the nose of an excellent driver like Frijns.

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.