Mar.12 (GMM) Christian Klien has emerged as another contender to become a Friday driver for the new Spanish team HRT in 2010.
We reported on Friday that Ferrari reserve Giancarlo Fisichella was shown around the HRT garage in Bahrain by a very tired-looking team boss Colin Kolles.
The Austrian broadcaster ORF claims that Klien, the 27-year-old former Honda and BMW test driver, with 48 grands prix under his belt with Jaguar and Red Bull, is also being considered by HRT.
For the first time since 2003, Klien is not at this year’s season opener.
Instead, he is currently training in the Canary Islands with his personal coach.
It is believed Kolles is prepared to pay an experienced driver to help the new team with development of the new Dallara-built car, which made its debut at the Sakhir circuit on Friday.
Race drivers Bruno Senna and Karun Chandhok are both rookies, and early indications suggest that the HRT single seater is significantly off the pace.
Moreover, FIA president Jean Todt said on Friday that he is keen to reinstate the old 107 per cent qualifying rule, even though for 2010 this would require the unanimous agreement of all the teams.
But the Frenchman insists he is supportive of F1’s new entrants.
“You must have respect for a new team who is arriving in this particular economic crisis period and to invest money to be in F1,” said Todt.
“I don’t think it is a time to criticise but to support and help, and to help them, and it is in the interests of everybody.”