What has been expected is confirmed now. Karun Chandhok was announced as HRT F1 driver for 2010 season. If I am counting correctly he is the 6th 2009 GP2 driver to get the 2010 F1 driver (Kobayashi, Alguersuari, di Grassi, Petrov, Hulkenberg). And that does not include his team mate Bruno Senna (confirmed in November by Campos META) who last raced in GP2 in 2008.
Here is what Colin Kolles and Jose Ramon Carabantes
“I am very pleased to use the Murcia site to officially unveil our car livery today. We also complete the driver’s team line-up with the Indian Karun Chandhok at the wheel of the car for our first ever season. We have been very impressed with Karun’s performance in GP2. India is a great country. It will be great for the sport to have an Indian driver on the grid for the first Indian Grand Prix. Murcia is part of the roots of the team. Everything is now in place after an impossible race against time to register the team’s name and I truly believe that we have an excellent platform to build on and move forward for a strong 2010 performance. Now, we need to work together. We need to learn together and keep developing as a team.” – Colin Kolles, team principal
“The new HRT F1 Team, Hispania Racing F1 Team is born in Murcia. I am proud to welcome you in Murcia where the team has its roots and to have given to my country the pride of the first ever Spanish Formula 1 team. The name of the team contains the word Hispania, which is not only the name of one of my companies, but Hispania was also the Roman name for the Iberian Peninsula. That reflects now our team’s new identity. 2010 will be a major debut for the team and drivers at the wheel of our HRT F1 Team car.” – Jose Ramon Carabante, team owner
Update: Video from the launch (photos in the comments):
Photo: Red Bull/GEPA