Haas signs 17-year-old American Santino Ferrucci as development driver


Haas has signed a 17-year-old American, Santino Ferrucci, as its development driver.

Ferrucci will drive in GP3 for DAMS this year, but will also be embedded in the Haas F1 team, attending races, tests and taking part in the team's simulator programme.

He comes to the new role with a solid junior career and, among other accolades, became the youngest race winner in British Formula 3 in 2014. Last year he finished third in the Toyota Racing Series in New Zealand, his first full season competing in an open-wheel championship, along with 25 race appearances in the Formula 3 European Championship, including one podium finish at-Spa Francorchamps.

"In Formula One, developing your personnel is as important as developing your racecar. You can't have one without the other," Haas team principal Guenther Steiner said. "Santino Ferrucci has done a very good job of proving himself in each of the racing series he's competed in, and his maturity outside of the racecar is impressive.

"We see Santino as a young, American driver with a lot of potential. His opportunity with DAMS is an excellent way for him to further his development while positioning Haas F1 Team for future success."

Ferrucci added: "My goal since I first started racing was to become a Formula One driver, and to be an American who is part of an American team is something I take a tremendous amount of pride in.

"There is still a lot of work I need to do, but being paired with Haas F1 Team will allow me to learn more and at a faster rate. It'll allow me to make the most of my GP3 drive with DAMS and, ultimately, prepare me for Formula One."