11/21/05 The Minardi F1 Team today commenced the final test of its 21-year history, at the Autodromo Vallelunga, near Rome. The Faenza squad passed into Red Bull ownership at the beginning of November, but this testing commitment, organized prior to the sale of the team, has been honored in order to allow a number of young drivers to have their first experience of Formula One performance. In addition to three Minardi Cosworth PS05 chassis, plus a pair of PS04Bs, present at Vallelunga, there will be four of the Ledbury-based F1x2 two-seaters running this week, providing passenger rides to representatives from a number of Minardi sponsors, technical partners and suppliers.
The driver line-up for the test includes Spaniard, Roldan Rodriguez, Juan Caceres from Uruguay, and Britain's Katherine Legge (Champ Car Atlantic driver), as well as two promising young Italian drivers, Luca Filippi and Davide Rigon, selected as part of a driver-search program organized by the Italian autosport federation, the CSAI: In addition, official Minardi test driver, Chanoch Nissany, will complete his 2005 program with the team in the course of the four-day event. Monday's program saw Nissany running throughout the day, with Rodriguez completing 20 laps in the morning, and Filippi a similar number in the afternoon session.
The F1x2 cars will be driven by 2005 Minardi drivers Christijan Albers, Robert Doornbos and Patrick Friesacher, plus Gianni Morbidelli, Matteo Bobbi and Gabriele Lancieri.