Tuesday February 20th, 2001
Brazilian Tarso Marques will drive for the Minardi team in the 2001 season, filling the final spot in the Formula One grid this year, it was announced today.
As revealed in Atlas F1's The Daily Grapevine four days ago, 25-year old Marques will join Spaniard Fernando Alonso at the Faenza-based team.
Marques, who previously raced for Minardi in 1996 and 1997, has signed a one-year contract with the Italian outfit, with an option to extend it for a further year.
"I am very pleased to be returning to Formula One, particularly as it is with European Minardi," Marques said. "I know many people here from my races with the team in 1996 and 1997, so it is a little like coming home.
"At the same time, there is also a different feeling at the factory since the team now has a new owner in Paul Stoddart. There is a lot happening and it all seems very exciting, so I think it is a good place to be.
"I am really looking forward to driving in the world championship again and helping the team to be as competitive as possible."
Marques made his Formula One debut at the 1996 Brazilian Grand Prix, and has competed in twelve races but is yet to score a point. The Brazilian drove in the American CART championship during the past two seasons.