Red Bull protege Jean-Eric Vergne will drive for Toro Rosso in Friday practice at three of the four remaining 2011 grands prix, STR has announced.
The 2010 British Formula 3 champion and '11 Formula Renault 3.5 runner-up will make his GP weekend debut for the team in Korea this week, where he will take over Jaime Alguersuari's car for the Friday morning session. He will not run at the Indian GP so that regular drivers Alguersuari and Sebastien Buemi can maximize their running time at the brand-new track, but will return for Abu Dhabi and Brazil.
"Jaime sits out the session because the last time a driver was replaced on Friday morning, it was Sebastien Buemi who gave up his seat to Daniel Ricciardo," the team announced. "Vergne will return in Abu Dhabi, replacing Buemi. At the final round of the season in Brazil, whichever of the Toro Rosso drivers has the least points will give up his seat to Vergne for FP1."
Vergne could be Toro Rosso's official third driver in 2012. The 21-year-old Frenchman took part in last year's young driver Formula 1 tests in Abu Dhabi with STR and is expected to do the same this winter.