Vettel to grab BMW-Sauber ’Friday’ role

UPDATE (GMM) BMW has described as 'speculation' reports that Sebastian Vettel could this week be installed as its formula one team's new 'Friday' practice driver.

After Robert Kubica replaced Jacques Villeneuve in the race seat, BMW-Sauber applied to the FIA for a Super License for the 19-year-old German, according to rumor on Monday.

''This is still speculation,'' a spokesman for BMW Group insisted.

''There has not been a final decision yet.''

08/21/06 (GMM) German teenager Sebastian Vettel is on the verge of landing the role as BMW-Sauber's 'Friday' driver.

With former third pilot Robert Kubica moving into departed Jacques Villeneuve's race cockpit in Hungary, the Hinwil-based team did not have time to install a replacement.

But it has now emerged that, ahead of the grand prix on Sunday in Turkey, BMW is currently awaiting the FIA's reply after an application was lodged for 19-year-old Vettel's F1 super license.

He has amassed the requisite 300kms of F1 running, with tests for BMW-powered Williams last year and again in 2006 in a BMW-Sauber car.

Blonde-haired Vettel is also highly-rated, and at the weekend won both rounds of the F3 Euroseries at the Nurburgring.

It was earlier speculated that a recent finger injury might have put paid to his F1 chances for the moment, but he was quoted by 'sid' as saying that the injury 'did not bother' him in Germany.

''He has the same determination and ambition as Michael (Schumacher),'' said Gerhard Noach, who was instrumental in the junior careers of both men.

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