Red Bull confirm Sébastien Buemi as reserve driver for 2012

Red Bull name Sébastien Buemi, who was dropped from feeder team Toro Rosso, as reserve driver for their senior team

By Gareth Llewellyn
sebastien buemi
Sébastien Buemi spent three seasons at Toro Rosso Photo: Getty Images, courtesy of Toro Rosso

sebastien buemi

World champions Red Bull have named Sébastien Buemi as the team’s test and reserve driver for 2012.

The Swiss 23-year-old was left without a racing seat for this year after Toro Rosso opted for an all-new driver line-up for the forthcoming 2012 season – but he will now provide back-up for double world champion Sebastian Vettel and Mark Webber.

“It’s good to remain with Red Bull for another year and have this opportunity with the World Championship winning team,” said Buemi.

“I would prefer to be driving at the races of course, but working with Red Bull Racing on the development of their car and providing them with feedback throughout the season is the next best thing.”

Team principal Christian Horner said the move was a “logical” one. “He already knows the team well from his time with us in 2008 and has gained significant race experience over the past three years,” said Horner.

“He will complete important test and simulation work for us throughout the year and will be in attendance at each grand prix.”

On the back of Red Bull’s announcement, Toro Rosso revealed on their website that Buemi will also act as their reserve driver in the event that Daniel Ricciardo or Jean-Éric Vergne are unable to race.

A Toro Rosso statement read: “Although our sister team in Milton Keynes will be the Swiss driver’s top priority, if for any reason, Scuderia Toro Rosso found itself short of a driver at a grand prix, then Sébastien would step into the cockpit for us.”

Buemi joined Red Bull’s young driver programme in 2004 as he competed in the ADAC BMW series, Formula Three, Formula Renault and GP2 before becoming the team’s reserve driver in 2008.

In 2009, Buemi joined Toro Rosso when Vettel moved up to Red Bull – but the Swiss driver was dropped along with team-mate Jaime Alguersuari to be replaced by Red Bull-backed Daniel Ricciardo and Jean-Eric Vergne.

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