Caterham announced that Kamui Kobayashi will be driving one of the cars in Abu Dhabi, which means that the other can go to the highest bidder, or to Roberto Merhi, who says that he has a contract to replace one of the regular drivers if that is required. He may not be the only one with such a contract given the recent mayhem with the team. One other name that should be considered is that of Rubens Barrichello as he was very close to getting a deal to race in Brazil, if the team had attended that race. Whether his deals will still work in Abu Dhabi remain to be seen.
Elsewhere Carlos Sainz Jr will be testing for Red Bull alongside Daniel Ricciardo in the post-race test in Abu Dhabi. This is interesting, depending on any announcement this week, but it could mean that the Spaniard is still being considered either for the second Toro Rosso seat, or for the reserve driver role at Red Bull.
In the meantime, McLaren is clearing the decks in preparing for its new driver announcement with the news that the team’s long association with Gary Paffett is coming to an end. Paffett is a Mercedes drivers and with McLaren switching to Honda, the relationship no longer fitted. Paffett has been a test driver and reserve driver for McLaren for eight years and has spent hundreds of hoursin McLaren’s simulators.
Gary will continue his association with Mercedes-Benz in DTM.