18 Jul 2009

New Zealander's Formula One record under threat

9:54 am on 18 July 2009

Spanish teenager Jaime Alguersuari is set to become Formula One's youngest ever driver.

If he starts in the Hungarian he will beat the record currently held by New Zealand's Mike Thackwell by 58 days.

Thackwell started the 1980 Canadian Grand Prix with Tyrrell aged 19 and 183 days. Alguersuari will be 19 years and 125 days on race day in Budapest.

Alguersuari's likely start follows the Toro Rosso team's frustartion with the efforts of France's Sebastien Bourdais.

The Ferrari-powered team, winners of their home Italian Grand Prix last year with Germany's Sebastian Vettel, said four-times Champ Car champion Bourdais had made his last appearance for them.

Alguersuari, the British Formula Three champion, is competing for his Carlin team in a World Series by Renault race at Le Mans -- Bourdais' home town -- this weekend.

Bourdais is threatening to sue Toro Rosso for dropping him.

Bourdais was the winner of the now defunct Champ Car title in the United States four times from 2004 and 2007,

He's currently sixteenth in the driver's table, two rungs lower than Swiss team-mate Sebastien Buemi.

Bourdais, who joined Toro Rosso in 2008, scored just six points from the 27 Grands Prix in which he competed, achieving just two seventh places last season and two eighth places this season.