Davide Valsecchi (DAV-ee-day val-SEC-ee; born January 24, 1987 in Eupilio, Como, Lombardy, Italy) is an Italian racing driver who has competed in Formula One as an occasional test driver since 2010. Valsecchi has participated in tests for the HRT, Lotus and most recently the Lotus Renault F1 Team where he currently resides as the official third driver for the team. Aside from Formula One, Valsecchi competed in the GP2 Series for a number of years before finally becoming the GP2 Champion in the 2012 season.
During the 2013 season, when it was announced that Räikkönen had to miss the two final races in U.S. and Brazil due to back problems, he was hoping to get a seat to replace the injured Finn. But he did not got a seat to replace the Finn. Instead, Kovalainen replaced Räikkönen.
He is set to drive in IndyCar or WTCC in 2014.
In 2016, he was the commentator for the FIA Formula 2 Championship alongside Alex Jacques.
Formula One Career
After a successful season in the 2010 GP2 Series championship which saw him crowned the GP2 Asia Series champion which saw him win three of the eight races that year, Valsecchi was invited to take part in the 2010 Young Driver Test for the HRT team. The test would take place at the end of the 2010 Formula One Season at the Yas Marina Circuit. Valsecchi would partner fellow GP2 drivers Josef Král and reigning GP2 champion Pastor Maldonado in the HRT team at Abu Dhabi test. With Maldonado in the car for the first day, Valsecchi and Král shared the HRT car for the second day of the test. Valsecchi posted the fastest time of the three HRT drivers at the test and finished the session eleventh out of fifteen onn the second day of the test.
2011: Team Lotus
For the GP2 series, Valsecchi made the move from iSport International team to Team AirAsia. Team AirAsia held close relations to the Lotus team in Formula One which enabled Valsecchi to gain his official role in Formula One joining the Lotus team as a test driver alongside GP2 teammate Luiz Razia. Valsecchi got his first opportunity to drive at Formula One race weekend when he substituted for Heikki Kovalainen in the first practice session of the 2011 Malaysian Grand Prix. Valsecchi finished the session in 21st place, teammate Jarno Trulli finished the session in 16th.
2012-Present: Lotus F1
After a very successful season in the GP2 Series which saw him take the GP2 crown after five seasons of competing in the category. His success in the category meant he was once again invited to the end of year Formula One young driver test in Abu Dhabi. Valsecchi would take part in the session with the Lotus-Renault team. Alongside him at the test was Nicolas Prost and Edoardo Mortara who would be taking part for the first two days with Valsecchi taking part on the third and final day. At the end of the session Valsecchi was the quickest driver of the seven participants in the session. Valsecchi completed the most laps of the session as well with a total of 86 laps.
After being crowned GP2 Champion in 2012, Valsecchi was therefore barred from entering the series for the following seasons. Valsecchi attempted to gain a race seat in Formula One for the 2013 season but due to the fact that the majority of the seats had already been filled on the grid for 2013, Valsecchi pulled out of accessing a race seat. Instead he opted to sign with the Lotus F1 Team as their leading test and reserve driver for the 2013 season. Valsecchi would therefore perform the majority of the development work with the team and would be the first reference as substitute for race drivers Kimi Räikkönen and Romain Grosjean.
At the second Barcelona pre-season test for the 2013 season, regular Lotus driver Räikkönen was confirmed to be unwell and would not participate for the majority of the testing at the venue. Valsecchi performed as test driver for 16 laps on the third day, taking over from teammate Grosjean mid-way through the session. Valsecchi was on stand-by to drive for the fourth and final day but it was confirmed that Räikkönen was well enough to carry out his testing duties for the final day of the test.
Formula One Statistical Overview
Formula One Record
|2009||Renault Driver Development|
|2010||HRT F1 Team||HRT-Cosworth||Test Driver|
|2011||Team Lotus||Lotus-Renault||Test Driver|
|2012||Lotus F1 Team||Lotus-Renault||Test Driver|
|2013||Lotus F1 Team||Lotus-Renault||Test Driver|
|Complete Formula One Results|
|3rd||DNQ||Did not qualify|
|5th||Points finish||DNPQ||Did not pre-qualify|
|14th||Non-points finish||TD||Test driver|
|Italics||Scored point(s) for Fastest Lap||DNS||Did not start|
|18th†||Classified finish (retired with >90% race distance)||NC||Non-classified finish (<90% race distance)|
|4thP||Qualified for pole position||[+] More Symbols|
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