Jérôme D’Ambrosio has joined Lotus as third driver for the 2012 F1 season. Jérôme, who competed last year as a race driver for Marussia Virgin Racing, will attend all races this year. The 26 year-old Belgian will participate in driver debrief sessions and be ready to stand-in for either of the two race drivers if required.
How does it feel to join the team?
It’s a great feeling to be joining Lotus F1 Team and it’s an exciting next step in my career. I contested a complete season in F1 as a race driver for a smaller team where I learnt a lot about F1. Now I have the opportunity to work with one of the top teams with great potential for my future development. With my recent race experience I know I can make a valuable contribution to the team.
Wouldn’t you rather be racing this year?
Of course, I would love to be racing, but racing with a top team. Being associated with Lotus should be more beneficial than racing with a team further down the order. This opportunity is one I couldn’t afford to miss. My desire to get back in a race seat in the future is motivating me to do the best job possible in my new position.
There’s a new ‘Driver in the Loop’ simulator being built at Enstone – will you be using this?
The new simulator will make up a big part of my contribution to the team and it will also keep me sharp; I’m really looking forward to it and can’t wait to start working with it. I can contribute highly to the team in this area. It’s going to be a really intense programme once we’re operational in that area – it’s not just one session a week, it’s full on. It’s a really good tool for pushing development of the car and of myself as a driver so I am looking forward to doing a good job here.