Verstappen returns with Minardi

Minardi boss Paul Stoddart has confirmed that Dutch driver Jos Verstappen will race for the team alongside Justin Wilson this season

Verstappen returns with Minardi

Verstappen has been linked to the second drive at the small Italian squad for some time. The move means the Dutchman will return to Formula 1 for the first time since he drove for the Arrows team in 2001.

"I am very pleased to be back in Formula 1 and to have signed to drive for Minardi in 2003," said the Dutchman. "Up and down the pit lane, it has always been known that Minardi builds good cars and is a strong little team that has only been prevented from achieving its full potential over the years by a lack of sponsorship.

"I am really impressed with Paul Stoddart's plans for the team and by this year's technical package, which looks strong to me."

Stoddart believes that the pairing of Verstappen and Wilson, along with the customer Cosworth engine the team will use this season, will lead the team to success this season.

"The combination of Jos Verstappen and Justin Wilson will, I believe, give Minardi the strongest driver line-up in its history," said Stoddart. "The two of them will provide just the right level of youth and experience, and combined with an effective chassis and Cosworth Racing's powerful CR3 engine, we will definitely have a much stronger package in 2003.

"Until we get to the first Grand Prix in Melbourne it's impossible to know to what degree the other teams will have improved over the winter and how we'll compare to them. Even so, I'd like to think Minardi could be the breakthrough team of 2003."

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