Sam Bird to test for Mercedes
It has been confirmed that ESPNF1 columnist and GP2 driver Sam Bird will drive for the Mercedes F1 team in the post-season Abu Dhabi test.
Bird has enjoyed impressive showings in this year's GP2 championship in his debut season including his first victory at Monza and currently lies fifth in the drivers' standings. The drive is just reward for the ART driver, who has previous experience of driving a Formula One car when he completed a test for the Williams team in 2007.
"Sam has done an impressive job in the GP2 Series during his first season," said Mercedes team boss Ross Brawn. "He is the highest-placed rookie in the championship order with some excellent results over the year. We are very pleased that Sam will be joining Mercedes for the Young Driver test next month and are confident that he will provide the team with the essential consistency and feedback we require.
"This is also an excellent chance for Sam to continue his progression in motorsport and widen his experience of Formula One.
"Sam has been chosen due to his relevant current single-seater pedigree through his competition in GP2, the F3 Euro Series and British F3 and as an added bonus, he will have experience of the track from his GP2 racing over the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix weekend. We look forward to working with Sam at the test and to seeing his progress and feedback over the two days."
Mercedes Motorsport president Norbert Haug was equally happy to have Bird behind the wheel in Abu Dhabi.
"For the upcoming Young Driver test days in Abu Dhabi, it was important for us to find a young and talented driver with single-seater and preferably GP2 experience," said Haug.
"Sam Bird, who competed in the F3 Euro Series last year with our DTM partner team Mucke Motorsport before he progressed to the ART team in GP2, who are also partners with Mercedes-Benz in F3, fulfils these requirements. With the experience that Sam will gain during the GP2 races in Abu Dhabi, I am sure he will be well prepared for the test."
Bird will participate in the final round of the GP2 championship in Abu Dhabi before the season ending test.