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Zhou Guanyu joins Alfa Romeo becoming China's first-ever F1 driver

By Shi Futian | | Updated: 2021-11-16 17:20
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Chinese racing talent Zhou Guanyu has dashed into auto racing history as the 22-year-old became the nation's first-ever Formula 1 driver.

Alfa Romeo Racing Orlen announced on Tuesday that Zhou joined the team as race driver for the 2022 season, and the Chinese talent will make his F1 debut as he lines up on the grid for next season's opener in Bahrain.

"Becoming an F1 driver has always been my dream, and I'm really excited to finally fulfill my dream. I want to thank all my fans who have been following my races and supporting me," Zhou told China Daily in an exclusive interview.

"I'm looking forward to the opening race of the next F1 season. Until then, I will continue to comprehensively improve myself. And I will learn from my teammate, Valtteri Bottas, who is a very experienced driver. I hope you can always support me and follow my first F1 season."

Zhou's teammate at Alfa Romeo will be Finnish racing star Valtteri Bottas, who currently drives for Mercedes-AMG Petronas F1 Team this season along with Lewis Hamilton. Such a combination gives Alfa Romeo confidence in the next season.

Frederic Vasseur, team principal at Alfa Romeo Racing Orlen, is also confident in Zhou's promising future in the F1, and he hopes the inclusion of Zhou will help to attract more Chinese fans to the team.

"It is a pleasure to welcome Zhou Guanyu to Alfa Romeo Racing Orlen. He is a very talented driver, as his results in F2 have shown, and we are looking forward to helping his talent flourish even more in Formula One," said Vasseur.

"We are proud of our line-up for 2022 and we are confident Zhou will form a very successful partnership with Valtteri. We are also looking forward to welcoming all the new Chinese fans who will join the team. Alfa Romeo Racing Orlen is a historical brand and one that embodies the spirit of Formula One and we will do our utmost to make the experience of our sport a great one in China."

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