While Vitantonio Liuzzi is currently strutting his stuff as a guest driver at this weekend’s ArmorAll 600 round of the V8 Supercars championship on the Gold Coast, his Hispania Racing F1 team has confirmed that he won’t be behind the wheel at next weekend’s Indian Grand Prix.
The Spanish team had already confirmed that Narain Karthikeyan would be contesting his home Grand Prix, and many had expected that it would be Liuzzi – not the team’s newest recruit, Daniel Ricciardo – who would partner the Indian at the Buddh International Circuit.
But despite assurances that Liuzzi had an iron-clad contract to race at every round of the 2011 season, a team media release previewing next weekend’s race confirmed that he would stand aside for Ricciardo and Karthikeyan.
“For this single event, Narain will be driving alongside Daniel Ricciardo,” team boss Colin Kolles is quoted as saying.
“I have asked Tonio Liuzzi to step aside for the Indian GP in order to allow driving programs with Ricciardo and Karthikeyan to be completed. I have to thank Tonio for his professional approach and attitude.”
Liuzzi is yet to comment on the announcement.
[Original image via Sutton Images]