SEPTEMBER 24, 2010
Klien a boost to HRT chances in Singapore?
Christian Klien is to replace Sakon Yamamoto alongside Bruno Senna in the HRT team for the Singapore Grand Prix.
HRT team principal Colin Kolles said: "It looks as if Sakon Yamamoto has a food poisoning and he doesn't feel well. Because of this, Christian Klien will be driving the car this Friday and the rest of the Singapore Grand Prix. I hope Sakon gets well soon and is able to drive at his home Grand Prix in Japan."
HRT's rivals might be casting a wary eye on the more experienced 27-year-old Austrian in the car at a street race which could boast a high rate of attrition, especially if rain materialises.
Tenth place in the constructors' championship is worth a considerable amount of money in FOM prize money and travel benefits, while 11th and 12th places are not. Although none of F1's new teams have as yet scored a point, Lotus Racing holds 10th place through Heikki Kovalainen's 13th place in Melbourne, as against HRT's classified 14th places in Australia and Monaco. Virgin Racing, meanwhile, has one 14th place in Malaysia to its name, through Lucas di Grassi. One 12th place in an unpredictable race, however, would undermine the Lotus position.
Klien made his F1 debut for Jaguar at just 21, back in 2004 and then contested the full 2005/6 seasons for Red Bull. Since then he has logged considerable mileage as test driver for Honda and then BMW Sauber before driving Friday morning sessions for HRT this year in Barcelona and Valencia.