The likelihood is rising that Rubens Barrichello will switch from F1 to Indycar for the 2012 season. Left without a race seat after 19 consecutive seasons of grands prix, the 39-year-old Brazilian has been testing this week in Florida with the team of an Indy driver he describes as his “brother”, Tony Kanaan.
Barrichello was scheduled to test at Sebring over two days, but he completed yet another half-day on Wednesday, the Brazilian newspaper O Estado de S.Paulo revealed.
“I don’t know how things are going to move forward now,” he told the correspondent Livio Oricchio. “I have not spoken with (owner) Jimmy Vasser about racing in the season.”
Much has been made about an earlier promise Barrichello made to his wife Silvana about never racing at high speed on American ovals — the kind that claimed the life of Dan Wheldon late last year.
“She has come here (to Sebring) now,” Barrichello revealed, “and today she was supporting me, seeing how happy I am. Silvana even joked with Tony, saying that he was to blame for all of my enthusiasm.”
The 15-round 2012 season, featuring four oval tracks including the fabled Indy 500 in May, and a city race in Barrichello’s native Sao Paulo, kicks off at the end of March on the streets of St.Petersburg, Florida.
“What is certain is that it (the speculation) will not last long. Whether I race or not will be known soon. There is a lot of work still to do and KV (Racing) needs to know its driver,” said Barrichello.