After Lewis Hamilton’s maiden test and speculation linking him with a Chinese debut, McLaren has nonetheless confirmed that Pedro de la Rosa will remain in the race seat in Shanghai.
The rumour mill is not likely to stay quiet for long, however, as the Woking based squad stopped short of securing the 35-year-old Spaniard’s role for the last two races of 2006.
But race day in China and Friday practice for the Japanese grand prix are separated by just four days, meaning that the seat is still likely to be de la Rosa’s at Suzuka.
The last grand prix of the season, in Brazil, is scheduled for October 22 at Interlagos.
Williams, meanwhile, announced on Monday that team sponsor Royal Bank of Scotland’s Chinese partner, Bank of China, will be represented this weekend on the car’s livery in Shanghai.