After his Toro Rosso ousting, Jaime Alguersuari could emerge with the Mercedes team in 2012.
The Spanish sports daily AS reports that Ipic, Abu Dhabi’s international petroleum investment company, is unhappy with Red Bull for ousting the young Spaniard from its driver programme. IPIC owns the Spanish oil company Cepsa, which last year became a major Toro Rosso sponsor.
Alguersuari, according to the report, “had become the image of the company in its international expansion plans”. Through its investment vehicle Aabar, Abu Dhabi is also involved in F1 as a significant shareholder and sponsor of the works Mercedes team. AS said the Abu Dhabi link could see Alguersuari, 21, line up as the official reserve driver for Michael Schumacher and Nico Rosberg this year.
The report added that an Abu Dhabi-backed Alguersuari could be important to Mercedes, amid rumours the team’s title sponsor Petronas might leave the sport.
Petronas, the Malaysian oil company, recently stopped sponsoring the Yamaha team in MotoGP.