Former world champion Emerson Fittipaldi says Renault boss Flavio Briatore “likes the idea” of giving Brazilian rookie Nelson Piquet Jr his grand prix debut this year.
We reported last week that 60-year-old Fittipaldi, who won two drivers’ titles in the 70s, thinks the team’s young test driver is “ready” to arrive on the grid.
Fittipaldi, the Brazilian veteran, knows countryman Piquet Jr well after running the 21-year-old – who is the son of the triple world champion of the same name – in his A1 GP team.
Piquet senior, meanwhile – a close friend of Fittipaldi’s – was a guest of the Renault team at Indianapolis last weekend.
Reuters quoted Fittipaldi as saying this week: “I talked to Flavio Briatore in Canada. I said ‘Flavio, you want to put Nelsinho in immediately’.
“He likes the idea but he said ‘but I want my cars to be stronger for Nelson to be a competitor’.
“If I were Flavio I’d put him in this year,” Fittipaldi added.