Honda F1 website

APRIL 12, 2005

Christian Klien and the third driver rule

The third driver rule, which dictates which drivers can run on Fridays at each Grand Prix, could be rescinded in order to let Christian Klien take over the third Red Bull-Cosworth, despite the fact that the Austrian has competed in more than six World Championship events during the two previous World Championships. In the last few days Red Bull Racing has been campaigning quietly to change Article 58 of the FIA Formula 1 Sporting Regulations and get Klien into the field. We understand that in the spirit of cooperation the nine teams have all agreed to accept a rule change and our sources at the FIA say that it is happy to agree to the change to promote a consensus in these troubled times. That means that only Ferrari and Bernie Ecclestone need to sign up and the rule could be changed with immediate effect. This is, of course, assuming that those involved do not start playing politics and ask for support from Red Bull in other matters.

The change in the driver rule would open the way for experienced drivers to become test drivers.

A change in the rules would be a slap in the face for the drivers who have suffered because of the rule in the last two years, notably Justin Wilson, who was forced out of F1 by the rule and had to move to the United States to make a career for himself. The rule change will be little consolation.