Nelson Piquet Jr to drive Lotus Judd

Nelson Piquet Jr will follow up his experience of driving the 1987 Williams-Honda FW11B by taking the wheel of another of his father’s old Formula One machines, the Lotus 101-Judd from 1989, in Holland next month. Rotterdam is the European Capital of Sport for 2005 and, as part of the celebrations, the city will host race car demonstrations on a bespoke 2.7km circuit through the streets on Sunday 7 August.

As well as the opportunity to get behind the wheel of an iconic Formula One car, the Rotterdam event will also provide Piquet with the chance to drive in front of one of his home crowds – although Nelson races under the Brazilian flag, after his father’s nationality, he is actually half-Dutch, as his mother is from Holland. He has visited the country many times before, including competing there in the Marlboro F3 Masters at the legendary Zandvoort circuit, where he claimed pole position and finished the race in second place in 2003.

“I am really looking forward to driving another of my father’s car at the show in Rotterdam," stated Piquet. "I had such a great time in the Williams Honda, I liked it so much I want to drive it on a proper circuit."

"The Lotus is a couple of years newer than the Williams was, and as the pace of development in F1 cars is so quick, I expect it to be another completely different experience, but still one that I know I’m going to enjoy," Piquet continued. "It is going to be special to drive in the Netherlands because it means I can take part in a Formula One demonstration in a country where I have a lot of family and friends. I have quite a lot of fans in Holland because that is where my mother is from, in fact I have a fan club there, and the fans don’t always get the chance to see us drive the cars because getting to races across Europe isn’t always possible for them. Events like this mean we can give something back to the people that support us, and hopefully everyone will have a great day and we can put on a good show for them."

The Rotterdam street parade is set to be the biggest racing car event ever held in the Netherlands, and is expected to attract hundreds of thousands of spectators to its centrally located circuit and paddock area in the city. The event is to be open free of charge to the public, and there will be demonstrations of both current and historical F1 cars, Le Mans racers, and Paris-Dakar rally cars.

The Minardi F1 team has already confirmed its attendance, with Dutch race driver Christijan Albers set to demonstrate this year’s car. Other support from the world of F1 has come from former team owner Eddie Jordan, who will be entertaining the crowds with his band V10. The Rotterdam event will take place one week after the Hungarian GP2 weekend. Piquet Sports

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