Faenza, Tuesday: Scuderia Toro Rosso driver Jaime Alguersuari has revealed his concerns that his age has been a factor in his team’s delay in confirming him in a race seat for 2010.
The Spaniard believed he had signed a contract with STR to race for them next season, but so far the Red Bull-owned team have failed to announce him as one of their drivers. Today Alguersuari claimed that being the youngest Formula One driver in history has hindered him, and this may influence STR’s decision over whether to keep him.
“It’s not easy, being both a Formula One driver and a foetus at the same time,” Alguersuari said in a message delivered by ultrasound earlier today. “There were some issues earlier in the year when my fingers hadn’t fully developed, so I was unable to change gear properly, but now I’m coming close to full term and I’m confident that these issues can be put behind me for 2010.”
Alguersuari is due to be born in January – his F1 debut in Hungary last July made him the youngest driver ever to take part in a Grand Prix weekend. The previous record holder, 3-month-old Sebastian Vettel, responded to the Spaniard’s debut by spitting up over his chief mechanic.
STR have yet to comment publicly on Alguersuari’s appointment, amid rumours that ex-F1 driver Ralf Schumacher is to follow his brother into returning to the sport, in a move that promises an alarming level of mediocrity should it come off. However, team principal Franz Tost is said to be keen to give Alguersuari one more chance following his birth, “and if he doesn’t improve I’ll kick him across the garage.”
Though initially of questionable legality, it is now thought to be perfectly within the FIA’s rules for a driver as young as Alguersuari to take part. There have, however, previously been problems at the post-race weigh-in.