Chandhok eyeing test driver’s spot in F1

Friday, January 28, 2011

NEW DELHI - India’s Karun Chandhok is now keen to grab a test driver’s slot with the Formula One teams ready with their race driver’s line-up for the upcoming season.

The Vijay Mallya owned Force India was the last team to announce their race drivers Wednesday. Karun’s last year employers Hispania Racing, who signed another Indian, Narain Karthikeyan, for this season, has already ruled him out.

Chennai-based Karun told IANS he is in talks with various F1 teams for the reserve driver’s job.

“I have not given up on being F1 this year but a permanent seat is not going to happen,” Chandhok told IANS.

“So, my plan is to be in the scheme of things. If I am around here (F1), then I can fancy my chances for the 2012 season.”

When asked about his back-up plans if things do not work out in F1, Chandhok said: “As of now my prime target is to be in F1 with a middle-grid team and that will be decided in about two weeks’ time. If that does not happen, then I will have to think about other racing series.”

Chandhok said he remains committed to F1 in the long run, and for that he is ready to work behind the scenes and wait for the right opportunity.

Chandhok’s stint with Hispania ended after the first 10 races of the 2010 season.

The 27-year-old is the second Indian to drive a F1 car after Karthikeyan, who is making a comeback to the sport after five years.

Chandhok feels the going will be tough for Karthikeyan.

“He is making a comeback at the age of 34, so it will be tough. I wish him good luck. They have to work on the car for Karthikeyan to score points,” he said.

Filed under: Sports

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