Gutierrez downplays Sirotkin rumours

Friday 26-July-2013 11:32

Esteban Gutierrez is unconcerned about rumours that he could lose his Sauber seat to Russian rookie Sergey Sirotkin next season.

Earlier this month Sauber announced that they had signed several major partnerships with Russian investors that would guarantee the team's future in Formula One.

Russian entities Investment Corporation International Fund, the State Fund of Development of Northwest Russian Federation and the International Institute of Aviation Technologies have all come on board.

However, as part of the deal Sauber are believed to be contracted to giving Russian teenager Sirotkin a drive in next year's Championship.

Asked whether he was concerned about this impacting on his own future with the team, Gutierrez said: "That doesn't really make a difference to my current season so to be honest, my focus is here, it's on this season.

"I know very well what I have with the team, what has been my path with them over the last few years and what we're looking into in the future."

Should Sauber sign Sirotkin he will become the youngest driver ever at just 18 years of age and this has split the existing drivers, some of whom feel that is too young while others reckons talent is taletn.

"I wasn't ready at 18," said Lewis Hamilton. "I was pretty good at 18, so..."

However, Lotus's Kimi Raikkonen, who created headlines himself when he raced for Sauber back in 2001 with just 23 car races to his credit, believes age is not really a factor.

"I'm sure there will be and has also been an 18-year old, I guess. For sure they will take him if they feel it's the right thing, so I don't see that age will be the problem.

"It's about experience and that. He might be ready, he might not. Time will tell."

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