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F1 NEWS 

Da Matta backs Bourdais's F1 switch

Former Grand Prix driver Cristiano da Matta believes Sebastien Bourdais could not pass up the opportunity to race in Formula One next season.

"It's something that you just can't pass up," da Matta, who like Bourdais moved from Champ Car to F1, told the Associated Press in an interview.

"For someone growing up in Europe or South America, F1 is everything.

"When you get the chance, even at 28 years old and even with a team you know might not be able to win or compete for championships, you have to take it because you never know what will happen," added da Matta, who switched to Formula One in 2003 after having won the Champ Car title the previous year.

The Brazilian, however, did not enjoy a successful spell in Grand Prix racing and left in 2004 after having scored 13 points.

Bourdais will finally get his opportunity to race in Formula One after confirming a deal with Scuderia Toro Rosso for 2008.

Bourdais had admitted in the past that he had been frustrated  at not being able to attract the interest of Formula One teams despite having won three consecutive Champ Car titles.

Champ Car CEO Steve Johnson praised the Frenchman for his accomplishments in the American series.

"Sebastien is a great champion and we are very proud of all his champ Car accomplishments," Johnson said. "We are looking forward to celebrating Sebastien's Champ Car career at our season finale in Phoenix."

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