Haas have announced that Antonio Giovinazzi will drive for the team in FP1 at 2022 Italian and US Grands Prix.
Giovinazzi is currently reserve driver for Ferrari, Alfa Romeo and Haas after having previously driven for Alfa Romeo across the last three seasons, prior to the team’s decision to replace him with Guanyu Zhou this season and Giovinazzi joined Formula E instead with Dragon Penske.
Ferrari however are now keen for Giovinazzi to experience seat time in the new generation car with the Italian set to deputise for one of Haas’ regular drivers – Mick Schumacher and Kevin Magnussen each in FP1 at Italian and US Grands Prix.
“We’re happy to welcome Antonio Giovinazzi back to the team for the two FP1 outings,” commented Haas Team Principal – Guenther Steiner, as he added that Ferrari were eager to secure Giovinazzi “… some seat time in a current-spec Formula 1 car on a race weekend and we were naturally happy to assist.”
This won’t be the first time that Giovinazzi has driven for Haas in F1, having made seven FP1 appearances for the American constructor during 2017 season after he made his debut for Sauber earlier that season for two races as stand-in for then injured Pascal Wehrlein.
Steiner reflected on that season and the difference between then and now as he iterated that there is a “clear difference” in that he now has more experience from having participated in 62 F1 races, enabling the possibility of strong FP1 feedback in Italy and US.
Giovinazzi meanwhile is “glad” to have the opportunity to drive the new-specification F1 car this season, as he insisted that these two FP1 sessions will help him understand the car more as he said: “Besides simulator driving it is important to test a true car and I can’t wait to put my suit and helmet back on.
“It’ll be an opportunity to get confident with the new generation cars – it’s the best way to be ready if I were called as reserve driver.”
On the opportunity to drive in FP1 at his home event in Italy then Haas’ second home race of the season in USA, Giovinazzi commented: “Driving on challenging and exciting tracks as Monza and COTA makes it even more thrilling.”
Giovinazzi will drive in FP1 at 2022 Italian GP on Friday 9 September then again at US Grand Prix on Friday 21 October, with Williams also set to field a FP1 driver at Circuit of the Americas, Texas, after earlier this month confirming Logan Sargeant will make his F1 debut in FP1 at that venue