McLaren extends contract with Paffett

Gary Paffett

Gary Paffett

Jul.5 (McLaren) Vodafone McLaren Mercedes announced that they have extended its contract with Gary Paffett for the 2012 season as a test, development & reserve driver for the team, signing a deal that allows him to continue dovetailing his Formula 1 test duties with his racing career.

Paffett joined McLaren in 2005 and has played a key role in the development of the team’s race- and championship-winning cars.

Paffett said: “I’m extremely pleased to have renewed my relationship with Vodafone McLaren Mercedes. As everybody knows, success in Formula 1 is developed through the strength and duration of relationships: I’ve been a part of this team for more than five years, and it’s a place where I really feel happy and comfortable, and where I can confidently speak my mind.

“I’m proud that my contribution has enabled the team to remain a race- and championship-winning force in Formula 1, and I truly believe that we’ll continue to grow and improve in the future.”

Vodafone McLaren Mercedes team principal Martin Whitmarsh added: “Gary has become a vital part of our technical support and development team – both at the track and in the simulator.

“Both Gary and the team believes that this deal will underline his reputation as a strong development driver and a true team player.”

Paffett, manager, former grand prix racer Mark Blundell, said: “This is a great deal for Gary that really underlines the strength of his ongoing relationship with Vodafone McLaren Mercedes. Once again, Gary has shown he has the skills and capacity as a development driver to make a difference.”