Sergey Sirotkin to drive for Sauber F1 team in Russian GP practice

Sauber test driver Sergey Sirotkin will make his Formula 1 free practice debut at home in next month's inaugural Russian Grand Prix, the team has confirmed to AUTOSPORT

Sergey Sirotkin to drive for Sauber F1 team in Russian GP practice

The Formula Renault 3.5 race winner will take part in the first free practice session at Sochi.

The drive will be the 19-year-old's first outing on a GP weekend. He tested the 2014 Sauber in Bahrain in April.

Sauber team principal Monisha Kaltenborn said: "In the World Series by Renault, Sergey had a difficult start to the season with many technical problems, but in the meantime he was able to recover and to win the race in Moscow.

"We decided that this is the right time to give Sergey this chance."

The teenager joined Sauber last summer, when the team announced it would prepare him for a 2014 race seat after negotiating a deal with Russian investors.

After racking up mileage in a 2009 Ferrari and 2013 Sauber in order to help secure a superlicence, Sirotkin was instead made the team's test driver for 2014, as Sauber signed Adrian Sutil from Force India and retained Esteban Gutierrez for its race seats.

It has yet to decide which of its usual drivers will step aside for Sirotkin on the Friday morning in Russia.

They have alternated in relinquishing their cars to regular third driver Giedo van der Garde through the season so far.

Sirotkin currently lies fifth in the Formula Renault 3.5 standings with three rounds remaining of this current campaign.

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