McLaren team boss Martin Whitmarsh says he is pleased to see the squad's long-time reserve driver Pedro de la Rosa get a chance to return to racing with Sauber.
De la Rosa joined McLaren as a test driver in 2003 and has remained at the team ever since. He contested nine races for McLaren, first substituting for the injured Juan Pablo Montoya in Bahrain in 2005, then stepping in for the second half of the 2006 season when the Colombian left for NASCAR. He has been linked with race seats at various teams as the grid expanded for 2010, and was announced as Kamui Kobayashi's teammate at Sauber yesterday.
Whitmarsh said de la Rosa was joining Sauber with McLaren's blessing and best wishes.
"Pedro has never made any secret of his continued ambition to race in Formula 1, so we were never going to stand in his way should an attractive opportunity come his way," said Whitmarsh. "On the contrary, we wish him well. He's been a fantastic team player for the past seven years, has contributed a huge amount to our successes in that time, and will remembered by all at Vodafone McLaren Mercedes as not only an esteemed colleague but also as a good friend."