The rumour mill has been rather quiet on the subject of Jaime Alguersuari in the wake of the Spaniard’s recent dumping from Toro Rosso’s line-up at the end of the year. But credible sources are again suggesting that the 21-year-old could land up in Mercedes GP’s reserve driver line-up for the upcoming season.
The Spanish sport newspaper AS has reported that IPIC – the Abu Dhabi petroleum investment company that is a major shareholder in Mercedes and a minor shareholder in Toro Rosso – was most unhappy with the decision taken by Red Bull to drop Alguersuari from the junior team’s line-up.
IPIC has brought several of its subsidiary companies’ logos to Toro Rosso over the course of the year, including Falcon Bank, Nova Chemicals and – most importantly – Spanish oil company Cepsa.
According to the report, Alguersuari had figured prominently in Cepsa’s “international expansion plans”.
It would now seem that IPIC might be keen to flex its muscle and ensure that Alguersuari is looked after, and the most logical step is to place the Spaniard at Mercedes GP as a reserve driver.
His appointment should be met with little objection from the Mercedes top brass, with team principal Ross Brawn having previously gone on the record in praise of Alguersuari, who finished fourteenth overall in the 2011 Drivers’ Championship standings.
Perhaps all will be revealed when Mercedes unveils its 2012 challenger on 21 February?
[Image via Sutton Images]