Pilot and former sport Director of SMP Racing, who in 2002 was the first of the Russians got behind the wheel of a Formula 1 as test driver for the Minardi team, knows firsthand about Sergey Sirotkin and other students of the program of development of Russian Motorsport. asked Sergei Zlobin, the signing of the contract with Williams is the limit for SMP Racing, or interim milestone.
“Now the system is running SMP Racing more interesting than Red Bull. SMP is not just a brand, it’s not just pouring money into a fast kart driver, and the program, which you can feel. It includes a championship (Formula 4), and the support of children’s sport and pilots in the various youth racing series, – says Sergey. – If not for the financial and administrative mechanism created by Boris Rotenberg, in the Formula 1 did not go to one of the Russians. Even on my machine in 2003 had a sticker of the SMP (due to SMP Bank).
Initially, when the SMP Racing was created, we wanted to win three major races in the world: the marathon “24 hours of Le Mans” in the absolute, and therefore in the LMP1 class, and now SMP on the way there with BR1; Indy 500 (Mikhail Aleshin in this series was out, but I am sure that Russian pilots will be back in the US) and the Grand Prix of Monaco. Now is our chance in F1 – Sergey Sirotkin, and then Shvartsman. Rothenberg, by the way, personally took him under his wing. Boy, really quick and very talented. If he will stay in the program Ferrari, it will be a big event because we are not going to pay. Will the pilot SMP Racing Ferrari for the money.
But the program will do what it was created only when its team, its equipment or its riders will be the three peaks of Motorsport.
As for Sergey Sirotkin, he’s faster than a Stroll, and, speeding to Williams, he has a chance to appear in the top teams. All the worry that he has a contract only for a year, and I believe the opposite – thank God that the year would be a good chance to go further.”
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