Sutil secures F1 lifeline as Williams reserve driver
Bottas’s Melbourne back injury underlines team’s urgent need for experienced emergency backup
Adrian Sutil’s Formula 1 career has received an unexpected kiss of life from Williams, who have made a late decision to sign him as their reserve driver for this season.
The move came after Williams driver Valtteri Bottas suffered a back injury during qualifying for the season-opening Australian Grand Prix, which briey put his participation in Malaysia in doubt.
With Bottas ruled out of racing in Melbourne, the team realised that they needed a reserve driver should anything happen to Bottas or Felipe Massa. Deputy team principal Claire Williams and chief executive ofcer Mike O’Driscoll discussed the options when they were back at base following the Australian GP.
Test driver Susie Wolff was ruled out because although she has done a solid job in testing, she does not have an F1 superlicence and it is more than two years since she last raced – and more than a decade since her last competitive outing in a single-seater.
Williams wanted a quick deal, in the unlikely event that Bottas would not be t to race in Malaysia. That immediately ruled out