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Calado's F1 bid given Force boost
11:20am Thursday 5th September 2013 in Sport
VALE race ace James Calado has taken a giant leap towards his dream of competing in Formula One.
The talented 24-year-old from Cropthorne is reserve and test driver for Sahara Force India following a solid display in July’s young drivers’ event at Silverstone.
The deal, tied up by Nicolas Todt’s All Road Management (ARM) company, involves Calado in several Friday tests at this season’s Grands Prix. He heads to tomorrow’s opening free practice session at Monza before Sunday’s Italian meeting.
Dr Vijay Mallya, team principal of Sahara Force India, said: “I’m pleased to confirm we’ve signed James as our third driver.
We worked with him during the Silverstone test in July and he impressed everyone with his speed and consistency.
“We’ve always tried to support young drivers and this is a great opportunity for James to gain valuable experience of driving during Formula One race events.
It’s always useful to get another driver’s feedback on the car and it will help us evaluate James.”
Calado said: “It has been an amazing journey with the Racing Steps Foundation (RSF) to get me to this level.
“I am thrilled to have got this appointment with Sahara Force India and would like to thank Graham Sharp and Derek Walters, not to mention ARM, for their massive commitment and belief in my race driving skills.”
Calado was vice-champion in Formula Renault UK and the British Formula Three International Championship before doing likewise with ART Grand Prix in GP3. He was promoted to GP2 in 2012 and is continuing this season.
RSF founder Graham Sharp said: “The initiative was conceived to help foster exceptional race driving talent among those who might not have the resources to make the difficult journey to professional status.
“We are pleased to know that, thanks to the consistent racing skills James has demonstrated and with the undoubted wise counsel of ARM, he is now on the threshold of every racer’s dream — a Formula One Grand Prix drive.”
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