Panis Revved Up for France

Frenchman Olivier Panis will be back in the spotlight this weekend when he drives the third Toyota at the French Grand Prix

Panis Revved Up for France

38-year old Panis retired from racing at the end of the 2004 season to concentrate on a two-year testing deal with Toyota.

The veteran Grand Prix winner was not eligible to drive on Fridays until the rules were changed earlier this year, when the team decided to give Panis the chance to drive in front of his home crowd.

"I'm really looking forward to returning to the cockpit at Magny-Cours," said the Frenchman. "I first raced at the circuit in 1994 so I have over a decade of knowledge of the track. Now I hope to use that experience to help Toyota at the French Grand Prix.

"I think it would be a big shame to go through the entire Magny-Cours race weekend without any French drivers. As well as assisting the team, I hope to give something back to the spectators and to the French TV and press who supported me so well throughout my F1 career. I hope to enjoy myself as well."

Panis, who competed in 158 Grands Prix, will replace regular third driver Ricardo Zonta before the Brazilian returns at Silverstone.

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