Grapevine: Baumgartner Seeks 3rd Driver Role

Former Jordan and Minardi driver Zsolt Baumgartner is pushing hard to land a third driver role for this season - and he is going back to college in a bid to boost his chances

Grapevine: Baumgartner Seeks 3rd Driver Role

The Hungarian met with several teams at last weekend's San Marino Grand Prix to enquire about the chances of putting a deal together, and he is so determined to prove his worth that he has enrolled at the Technical Management School at Gvor in Hungary to improve his engineering knowledge.

Baumgartner's best chance of landing a third driver role is almost certainly with his old team Minardi, who have yet to take advantage of the extra car they are allowed to use on Fridays.

But Minardi are believed to be close to doing a deal with Chinese driver Marchy Lee, who is due to get his first run with the team at Mugello in Italy this week. If the Lee deal does not come off, however, then Baumgartner would be in the running for the position.

The only other option for Baumgartner is Sauber, but team boss Peter Sauber has made it clear that his outfit have bigger worries than running a third car.

"We do not need a driver in order to sort out if we need tyre A or tyre B for the reminder of the weekend," said Sauber. "Villeneuve and Massa can do that as well.

"We also do not need a pay driver just to roll around. We would need a driver who can contribute on setup matters or to sort out new parts. There are not so many drivers available who are able to do so."

Baumgartner had previously been ineligible for the Friday third driver role because he had competed in too many Grands Prix to qualify, but the change in rules brought about by Red Bull Racing have given him a fresh chance of getting back in an F1 cockpit.

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