|Wednesday, January 31
|Bernoldi wants to follow in Senna's footsteps|
SAO PAULO -- Brazilian Enrique Bernoldi has
joined the Arrows Formula One team but his real dream is to
drive for McLaren.
"I'd like to get to McLaren because (Ayrton) Senna was
always my idol and that's where he won his championships," the
22-year-old said Wednesday after being named as
Arrows' new driver.
Compatriot Senna, who died at Imola in 1994 after moving to
Williams, was champion in 1988, 1990 and 1991.
Bernoldi was Sauber's test driver last season and, after
missing out on a race seat there, joined Arrows as a surprise
replacement for Spaniard Pedro de la Rosa alongside Dutchman Jos
Bernoldi said in a telephone interview from Spain that he
had signed the contract on Friday.
"It was all sewn up, but they spread the word that I was
going to be a test driver because they wanted to speak to De la
Nicknamed "Baby" by the team, Bernoldi will give Brazil
three drivers in Formula One this season alongside Ferrari's
Rubens Barrichello and Jaguar's Luciano Burti. Ricardo Zonta, at
BAR last year, is the Jordan test driver.
"Now I have to run well, score the points, then win some
races and then the championship," declared Bernoldi, confidently
mapping out his future plans.
Bernoldi has shown that he can be on the pace in tests in
Arrows' new A22 and last season's A21 chassis at Barcelona's
Circuit de Catalunya.
He has a lot of work ahead of him at a team that finished
last season in seventh place with just six points. The season
starts in Australia on March 4.
"It's going to be a pretty hard month, but it will be plenty
of time to get used to everything as I was a test driver at
Sauber," said the Brazilian.
"To see McLaren and Ferrari ... sure, my heart is going to
beat faster because it is my dream. But I will try to keep my
head together and my feet on the ground."
Bernoldi had tested with Prost before the French team
decided to sign Argentine Gaston Mazzacane from Minardi and had
then been linked to the struggling Minardi team.
He said Minardi had been an option but felt he had made the
better choice with Arrows.
"I could see Minardi wasn't running well," he said.
"It all worked out well in the end as I'm now in a position
where I can do bigger things."
Arrows confirm talks with sponsor Chello
Bernoldi joins Arrows; de la Rosa out
Formula One driver lineups for 2001