Hispania Racing have announced that Christian Klien will be driving for them at this weekend’s Brazilian Grand Prix, replacing Japanese driver Sakon Yamamoto.
Klien has started only one other race this season – the Singapore Grand Prix in September – in which the Austrian retired after 31 laps with hydraulic problems.
The 27 year-old will partner Bruno Senna, who has never before partipcipated in any competitive racing in his home country. He will, however, have plenty of home support, being the nephew of motor-racing legend and Brazilian hero Ayrton Senna.
Dr. Colin Kolles, the Hispania team principal, expects a challenging, yet exciting race in Brazil, and said that the team are buoyed by their fourteenth- and fifteenth-place finishes last time out in Korea.
“After achieving our best race result of the season, we want to tie in this success and are looking forward to the next race in Brazil,” he said. “The circuit offers a mix of medium and low speed corners and the second sector is very twisty. As the track is quite bumpy, we will need a car with good mechanical grip and rear stability. As it runs anti-clockwise, the race is going to be a challenge for every driver and their necks. If it is raining like it has already done during other years, it is going to be interesting because the racing line gets very slippery.
“For both drivers, it is going to be an interesting race as Bruno Senna is racing for the first time in front of the Brazilian crowd and for Christian Klien, as he gets another chance after Singapore to race again. We are hoping to have a good race weekend again.”
Klien is actually has a lot of experience of F1, competing in 49 grand prix, and would be delighted if he could match his personal best in this race – a ninth place finish – on Sunday: “I am excited to come to Brazil where I already raced two times, the last time in 2005, and where I could achieve good results. The circuit is quite challenging and we are racing anti-clockwise which is going to be tough for the neck. There are many slow corners and the long straight at the start-finish-line where high speeds are possible.
“I am very happy to get a second opportunity to do another Grand Prix here after Singapore and I hope that we are doing a good weekend with positive results.”
Senna is understandably very excited about his first grand prix in his home country. “I'm really looking forward to the Brazilian GP and it is going to be my first time competing at home,” he said. “I haven't driven with a proper race car in Interlagos, but I know the circuit by heart and it's very challenging. Interlagos has mostly medium to low speed corners and is anti-clockwise, apart from being bumpy in places. So, the car needs to be suited to the bumps and long radius corners of the circuit.
“It's going to be a special race weekend for me and I hope to achieve my best result of the season! I hope the crowd will give away great energy and support to me and the Brazilian drivers.”