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Magnussen impresses for McLaren

MCLAREN'S Danish test driver Jan Magnussen did a remarkable job at Aida last weekend, standing in for Finnish star Mika Hakkinen, who was forced to miss the Pacific Grand Prix as a result of surgery for an acute appendicitis.

The 22-year-old from Roskilde, Denmark, has only been in motor racing for four years but was a triple World Champion in karting. He won the prestigious Formula Ford Festival in England at his first attempt in 1991 and, after a year in Opel Lotus racing, he won the British F3 Championship at his first attempt with Paul Stewart Racing, winning a record 14 of the 18 races. This year he has been testing for McLaren and racing for Mercedes-Benz in the German Touring Car series.

As soon as the decision was made, Magnussen began testing at Silverstone before flying out to Japan. He qualified 12th on the grid, just 0.6secs behind Mark Blundell and finished right behind the British driver in the race.

By the end of the weekend there were rumors that Magnussen may be found a drive next year by McLaren with Arrows, to give him F1 experience before he moves into the McLaren race team itself.

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