3 June 2011
Following a strong start to the 2011 Formula Renault 3.5 Series season for Robert Wickens, Marussia Virgin Racing is pleased to announce that it has signed Canada’s rising star to its 2011 Reserve Driver roster.
Thanks to the 22 year old’s commanding performances so far this season, the 2010 GP3 Series Runner-up is now second in the championship with four podiums – including one win – and three poles to his credit from the first four rounds of the pan-European ‘World Series by Renault’.
With such impressive credentials under his belt, little wonder that Marussia Virgin Racing have been following his rise through the ranks with keen interest and have now secured his services alongside Sakon Yamamoto as Reserve Drivers within the team’s Young Driver Programme.
Toronto-born Robert will attend each of the remaining Formula One Grands Prix where there is no clash with the Formula Renault 3.5 Series, with effect from next weekend’s Canadian Grand Prix on 10-12 June.
Robert began his karting career in 1997. In 2005 he was awarded a Junior Scholarship from BMW and participated in the Formula BMW USA, winning two races and scoring five podiums, ending the season as the best rookie driver. He remained in the series for 2006 but then switched to the EuroInternational Championship to become a Red Bull Junior Team driver and went on to win the series.
In 2007, Robert moved to Champ Car Atlantic, finishing third (one win, three podiums). A year later, he joined Formula Renault 3.5, winning a race in his debut season and finishing 12th overall. Also in 2008 he contended part of the F3 Euroseries, winning a race before continuing into 2009.
Robert was the only North American driver in the Formula 2 Championship for the 2009 season and finished second. In 2010 he raced in the new GP3 Series and again ended the season in second position.
John Booth, Team Principal
“Robert Wickens is a very impressive young driver who is currently going great guns in the Formula Renault 3.5 Series, so we are delighted to welcome him to Marussia Virgin Racing’s roster of Reserve Drivers. His fantastic performances so far this season are testimony to the fact that he has a bright future ahead of him. Robert will join us trackside at Grands Prix for as many races as his schedule will allow and in turn he will have the benefit of working closely with our race drivers and engineers as we develop our car and our team through the rest of the season.”
“I am delighted to be confirmed as a Reserve Driver with Marussia Virgin Racing. It’s an exciting time for me and Canadian motorsport. The support of Marussia Motors and the Marussia Virgin Racing team has been fantastic, and I am dedicated to repaying that faith in me by contributing everything I can to assist the team’s objectives in Formula One this year.”