Maria de Villota is not ruling out appearing during a Friday morning practice session some time in 2012.
The 32-year-old Spaniard made international headlines in March when she signed with Marussia as a test driver. She subsequently admitted, however, that – despite travelling to all the grands prix with the former Virgin team this year – she is “not the reserve driver”.
De Villota, whose father Emilio is a former F1 driver, also clarified in March that she is not contracted to practice on Friday mornings. But she is not ruling it out now.
“It depends on the team,” she told the Spanish news agency EFE. “I am trying to do all my duties well so that they are happy with me. And I think they are,” said de Villota.
“But the car is new and the drivers need the miles to develop it. So it’s up to the team (to decide). Hopefully it will happen soon, but what happens this year will happen. There may be surprises, but for now I am getting to do a lot of work in the simulator.”
Meanwhile, she made a bold prediction when asked which team she tips to win the so-far unpredictable 2012 championship.
“I think that McLaren is very strong,” said de Villota.
The last female driver to take part in official grand prix sessions was the Italian Giovanna Amati, who failed to qualify for three races in 1992.