Booth plays down d'Ambrosio, Wickens rumours

By on Friday, May 27, 2011

May 27 (GMM) Virgin team boss John Booth has played down reports Robert Wickens is on the verge of kicking off his formula one career.

It has been reported not only that the 22-year-old Canadian is head of the queue to be Virgin's new reserve driver, but first in line to replace Jerome d'Ambrosio should the Belgian's sponsors not pay up.

Wickens is strongly backed in the Formula Renault 3.5 series by Virgin and its F1 title sponsor and investor Marussia.

But Booth told the Sheffield Star newspaper: "He (Wickens) is in our young driver stable but we certainly don't plan on putting him in a F1 car yet.

"Robert is concentrating on his Renault series. He is doing a good job in that. We will then take it from there," he added.

At the same time, Booth scotched the rumours that d'Ambrosio's late-paying sponsors are seriously endangering his race cockpit.

"Everything is fine with him," he said.

"You can never say never because you can end up looking a fool, but, as things stand now, I can't envisage anything changing with Jerome until the end of the season."

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