Kobayashi returns, Merhi gets practice run
4 September 2014 – Caterham has confirmed the anticipated news that Kamui Kobayashi will return to a race seat for this weekend's Italian Grand Prix at Monza, reuniting with regular driver Marcus Ericsson.
The Japanese driver raced for the team for the first half of the campaign but stepped aside at the recent Belgian Grand Prix when Caterham opted to use André Lotterer to sample the upgrades to the CT05 chassis.
But the team confirmed on Thursday that Kobayashi will return to his CT05 – although not until the second practice session as Formula Renault 3.5 frontrunner Roberto Merhi will be given the opportunity to run in FP1.
"I am working for Caterham and I always respect team decisions. Now I am back in the car and looking forward to going racing again!" Kobayashi explained after his return to the cockpit was confirmed.
"We have worked hard and added performance to the car as well as bringing new updates since I last drove in Hungary before the summer break, so I'm looking forward to feeling the updates on track here in Monza."
Merhi thanked Caterham for giving him his first run in a Formula 1 machine.
"I am delighted to be taking part in my first ever Formula 1 free practice session and I want to thank Caterham for this opportunity – it's something I've wanted for a very long time," he said.
"I've been working very closely with the team during the last few weeks and I feel ready for this opportunity; Friday is going to be a very special day for me and one I will never forget."