BMW-Sauber has confirmed reports that Sebastian Vettel will appear in a third formula one car for the team at grands prix in 2007.
The rumour was first aired at the Brazilian grand prix, despite the demise of the rule allowing test drivers to use an extra car in practice sessions on Friday.
With only two cars allowed in each of the two 90 minute Friday sessions at races next year, it is therefore likely that Nick Heidfeld and Robert Kubica will take turns at vacating their race cars for the teenage German.
Theissen is understood to have ruled out switching drivers between cars during the sessions.
“We will see how much time we give him,” motor sport director Mario Theissen said.
“From a team perspective it is important to have the three drivers up to the game because if anything happens to the race drivers (Sebastian) has to step in immediately and perform.
“From a team’s perspective, it is not disruptive, it is a help.”
Vettel’s involvement with the formula one team at races will almost certainly preclude him from racing in the GP2 championship in 2007, which is held mostly on the grand prix weekends.