It's official, Ladies and Gentlemen: Sebastien Bourdais' career in Formula One is finished. In his place will be the youngest driver ever to race in F1, Spanish pilot Jamie Alguersuari. Scuderia Toro Rosso, out from whose cockpit Bourdais has evidently climbed for the last time and which Alguersuari will now call home, says it's taking the opportunity to promote one of its top protégés and doesn't expect the young Spaniard to begin yielding results immediately – especially since he has barely had the opportunity to even test the car away from the limelight of a Grand Prix weekend. Leg-up opportunities aside, it can't be ignored that with Alguersuari comes sponsorship cash from two major companies backing their countryman's career: Oil giant Repsol and savings bank La Caixa.
Alguersuari will be driving alongside Swiss driver Sebastien Buemi, both of whom will be wringing out a significantly updated car at the upcoming Hungarian Grand Prix. Missing out on the new package only served to further irritate the departing Bourdais, who, far from taking the dismissal lying down, has announced that he's looking into legal repercussions for STR's premature termination of his contract. Meanwhile, veteran test driver and close confident Marc Géné says that the timing of Alguersuari's race debut could make his the most challenging in F1 history.
But Jamie and the Red Bull Junior development program that brought him up through the ranks aren't about to take it easy – while racing in F1 for Toro Rosso, Alguersuari will continue to compete in the Formula Renault 3.5 championship in which he was already racing, making his one heck of a learning curve. Official announcement in the press release after the jump.
[Source: Scuderia Toro Rosso | Image: Peter Fox/Getty]
ALGUERSUARI JOINS SCUDERIA TORO ROSSO
Scuderia Toro Rosso is pleased to announce that, as from this weekend's Hungarian Grand Prix, Jaime Alguersuari will drive for the team, alongside Sebastien Buemi. The 19 year old Spaniard will thus become the youngest ever driver to take part in a Grand Prix weekend.
Jaime Alguersuari: "I would like to thank Red Bull for giving me this great opportunity to race in Formula 1. Ever since I started racing this has been my dream and thanks to the Red Bull Junior Programme I will now realise my ambition of lining up on a Grand Prix grid. I am aware that I'm facing a very tough challenge, because coming into Formula 1 is never easy, coming into Formula 1 in the middle of a season is even harder and doing so without any testing is really difficult. But already I feel that I am getting great support from the team, who have quite a reputation for looking after rookie drivers."
Franz Tost: "Red Bull's stated aim for Scuderia Toro Rosso is that, when possible, it should be used to provide a seat for products of its Young Driver Programme. We therefore chose Alguersuari as the most mature driver currently in the programme. I am well aware that over the next few months the team and Jaime will face a major challenge, especially because of the testing ban. But Red Bull is always ready for a new challenge. I do not expect anything from him for at least his first three races, during which he has to get used to the car, the team and to the Formula 1 environment."
Date of Birth: March 23, 1990
Place of birth: Barcelona (SPAIN)
Weight: 65 kg
• 118 races
• 17 wins
• 36 podiums
• 17 pole positions
• 8 fastest laps