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American F2 driver Correa to test F1 car

American Formula 2 driver Juan Manuel Correa will make his Formula One debut in a private test with Alfa Romeo on Aug. 24.

Correa, 20, is an Alfa Romeo development driver and has been racing for the Sauber Junior Team by Charouz in F2 this year.

The test will take place at the Paul Ricard circuit in the south of France and he will test a Sauber C32, which was the last of the team’s V8-powered cars before the V6 turbo powertrains were introduced in 2014.

He will target 300km in the car — just under a race distance — with the main aim of getting used to F1 machinery and working with an F1 crew of mechanics and engineers.

“To say I am excited is an understatement,” Correa said. “A test and a career in Formula One has been something that my partners and I have been working on for quite some time.

“I will take it all in stride, listen and learn all while gaining as much experience as possible.”

Correa was born in Ecuador but moved to Florida at an early age and was successful in karting on both a national and international level while living in the United States. On becoming the first American to win the Rotax Junior World Championship, he was recruited by the Lotus F1 Team’s junior programme and, at the age of 14, started racing go-karts in Europe.

He made his debut in F4 in 2016 before moving up to F3 in 2017. This year he made the step up to F2 and has scored two podiums in sprint races in both Baku and France.

In his role with Alfa Romeo, which changed its name from Sauber over the winter, Correa works alongside race drivers Kimi Raikkonen and Antonio Giovinazzi and test drivers Marcus Ericsson and Tatiana Calderon to develop his own racing skills. He is currently the highest-placed American driver in the European junior categories under F1.

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