Ahead of next week’s Shanghai Grand Prix, Reuters reports that former Chinese karting champion Ma Qinghua has won a place on the Hispania Racing Team’s driver development programme, a step towards a possible future on the team itself.
“I’m very honoured to form a part of the driver development programme at HRT Formula One team since, with work and effort, it will allow me to become the first Chinese Formula One driver,” Qing Hua said in a statement ….
“Now finally my childhood dream has become true,” he added. “Driving an F1 car will be the most incredible experience and I’m going to work hard to earn it.”
China has hosted a grand prix since 2004 but, with motor racing in its infancy there, has yet to provide a local for the fans to get behind despite an immense potential pool of talent.
Team principal Luis Perez-Sala told the AFP that “we are working so that one of the team’s signs of identity is to serve as a platform to launch young drivers, both nationally and internationally.” HRT was the team with which Bruno Senna, nephew of the legendary Ayrton Senna, made his Formula One debut.