16 Jul 2013

Russian teen could be next F1 driver

7:50 am on 16 July 2013

A Russian teenager could become Formula One's youngest driver next season as part of a financial lifeline keeping the Swiss Sauber team in the sport.

Cash-strapped Sauber have announced a partnership with three Russian entities, including the National Institute of Aviation Technologies, which is headed by the 17-year-old driver Sergey Sirotkin's father Oleg.

Sauber have said a development programme would be set up for Sirotkin to prepare him as a racing driver for the team in 2014.

If the plan comes to fruition, Sirotkin would be easily the youngest Formula One driver.

Formula One has wooed Russia for more than a decade with limited success, although the country's involvement is now growing steadily.