Minardi announce Marques as second driver

EUROPEAN MINARDI announced on Wednesday that Brazilian Tarso Marques will partner Fernando Alonso for the 2001 season.

Marques, 25, links up with Minardi for a second spell after previously driving for the Faenza-based team in 1996 and 1997. He is happy to return to Formula One after two years in Champ Cars and is ready for the challenge.

"I am very pleased to be returning to Formula One, particularly as it is with European Minardi," Marques said. "I know many people here from my races with the team in 1996 and 1997, so it is a little like coming home.

"At the same time, there is also a different feeling at the factory since the team now has a new owner in Paul Stoddart. There is a lot happening and it all seems very exciting, so I think it is a good place to be.

"I am really looking forward to driving in the world championship again and helping the team to be as competitive as possible."

The Curitiba-born driver competed in 12 races during his stint in Formula One and scored 11 points in last seasons Champ Car series.

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