Virgin axe D’Ambrosio for Pic

Date published: December 26 2011

As expected, Marussia Virgin Racing announced in the wake of the Brazilian GP that Charles Pic would replace Jerome D’Ambrosio next season…

As expected, Marussia Virgin Racing announced in the wake of the Brazilian GP that Charles Pic would replace Jerome D’Ambrosio next season.

D’Ambrosio failed to shine in his first season in Formula One, more often than not qualifying and finishing grands prix behind his more experienced team-mate Timo Glock.

Following Pic’s successful Young Driver test in Abu Dhabi, it appeared as if the writing was on the wall for D’Ambrosio.

And, with rumours claiming that Pic had been signed, the team confirmed in the wake of the season-ending Brazilian GP that D’Ambrosio was out for 2012 and would be replaced by GP2 driver Pic.

“I’m very pleased to welcome Charles to Marussia Virgin Racing as Timo’s team-mate for 2012,” said team boss John Booth.

“We naturally keep a close eye on the junior formulae and Charles is certainly someone we have been watching over the past few years. The real barometer however was our Young Driver Test in Abu Dhabi last week, where we put him through a series of tough tests to thoroughly evaluate his potential.

“This was his first time in a Formula One car so it should have been quite daunting, however Charles was extremely focused on what needed to be done and absolutely rose to the challenge. He continued to improve in every area but his race simulation work particularly caught our eye.

He added: “I would like to take this opportunity to thank J