F1: Ferrari name Esteban Gutierrez as test and reserve driver after leaving Sauber

Mexican spent two difficult years on the grid with Sauber and has found himself without a drive for the 2015 season

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The Independent Online

Esteban Gutierrez has been named as Ferrari's test and reserve driver for the 2015 Formula One campaign after being axed by Sauber.

After two difficult seasons with the Swiss-based marque, notably the past year when Sauber failed to score a point for the first time in their history, Gutierrez found himself surplus to requirements.

Ferrari, however, have decided to take the 23-year-old Mexican under their wing as back-up to recently-recruited four-times champion Sebastian Vettel and 2007 title-winner Kimi Raikkonen.

Team principal and director general Maurizio Arrivabene said: "While confirming our full confidence in a formidable race driver pairing, I am pleased to welcome Esteban.


"We are pleased to be able to offer this opportunity to Esteban who, although young, has plenty of experience relating to the new generation of Formula One cars.

"I am sure with his experience he will make an important contribution to the development work of the team in the simulator.

"Welcoming Esteban also means opening the gates of Ferrari to a driver from Mexico, a country where the Scuderia still has a lot of fans, just as was the case 50 years ago in the days of the Rodriguez (Pedro and Ricardo) brothers."

Appreciating the role he has been handed, Gutierrez said: "It is an honour to become part of the Scuderia Ferrari family, a team with such an exceptional history.

"It is for me the beginning of a new path for my future and I'm going to do my utmost to contribute to the achievement of the targets set by the Scuderia.

"I want to thank everybody for their belief in my potential. This will bring a great opportunity for me to develop further and get to the top in the near future.

"With all my passion and dedication, I'm now looking forward to the start of this new venture."