SEPTEMBER 21, 2001
Wilson impresses Jordan in F1 test
SHEFFIELD's Justin Wilson is being seriously considered for promotion to formula one by the Jordan-Honda team after an outstanding first test in one of their cars at Silverstone this week.
The 23-year old who earlier this month became the first British driver to win the Formula 3000 championship since its inception in 1985, never put a wheel wrong in treacherous conditions at Silverstone on his first outing in a formula one machine.
In slipper conditions on Wednesday Wilson was just 0.6sec slower than the veteran Jean Alesi who joined Jordan from Prost in the middle of the season.
This was despite his 6ft 4in frame being extremely difficult to squeeze into the Jordan cockpit and Wilson being forced to use the left-foot braking technique with which he was unfamiliar as there was insufficient room in the footwell to change the car from its existing specification.
Ian Phillips, Jordan's director of business affairs, said "we were incredibly impressed with Justin and the way he handled the wet and dry conditions with equal confidence, particularly as it was such a compromise to get him in.
"He really was extremely good and clearly has a lot of talent. He certainly is somebody we are considering for next year."
Jordan's title sponsor Benson & Hedges may be keen that the team supports another British driver, even though the second and final year of Damon Hill's formula one career with the team in 1999 left them distinctly underwhelmed.
However, the practical problems of trying to accommodate such a tall driver when it comes to interchangeability of cars with his team-mate may prove overwhelming.
In the meantime, Jordan has an option on his services for the next two months although he will be testing for the Williams-BMW team in the break between the US and Japanese grands prix.
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