Marino Sato will form an all-Japanese line-up at Alpha Tauri for the Young Driver Test in Abu Dhabi, partnering the already announced Yuki Tsunoda on December, 15. Sato – who spent the 2020 campaign with Trident – began his single-seater career in 2015, competing in Italian F4.

He then graduated to European F3 in 2018, before scoring nine wins in the Euroformula Open Championship in 2019, taking the title over Liam Lawson and Tsunoda. The Young Driver Test will be the 21-year-old’s debut in F1 machinery.

“I am extremely happy to be given this opportunity from AlphaTauri to drive an F1 car,” said Sato. “We will try to do as many laps as possible to get used to the car quickly and to learn maximum out of it for whatever it comes in futures.

“Obviously to be driving an F1 car is the dream of every racing driver, for sure I will enjoy a lot around Abu Dhabi!”

Sato competed for Trident in 2020
Sato competed for Trident in 2020

Alpha Tauri Team Principal Franz Tost believes that the experience will be beneficial for both parties, outlining what he thinks Sato will get from the test.

“We are pleased to have Marino Sato on board for the test because he did a solid job throughout the season in F2 this year,” said Tost. “He deserves a run in Formula One. We are convinced he can do a good job as he is a skilled drive

“The plan for the test is simple, getting him to do as many laps as possible to give him a good feeling for an F1 car. This test will be very useful, both for us and for Marino and we will do our best to help him understand how an F1 team operates in all its different aspects.

“In addition, from a technical point of view he will certainly learn something from which he will benefit next year, when he will continue in the F2 Championship. I think this is a very good preparation for his future and it’s a pleasure to be part of his development towards what we hope will be a very successful career.”