Wurz confirms immediate retirement from F1
|By Pablo Elizalde
||Monday, October 8th 2007, 15:11 GMT
Alex Wurz has confirmed he is retiring from Formula One racing, as revealed yesterday by autosport.com, and the Austrian will not even take part in the Brazilian Grand Prix.
"I would today like to announce my retirement from active racing in Formula One," Wurz, 33, said in a statement released by Williams.
"I would like to thank my family and fans, everyone at AT&T Williams and my previous teams, as well as the media, for all of their support during my Formula One racing career.
"In such a hard fought environment as Formula One, I have always maintained that if you have a moment's doubt about what you are doing, then it is time to stop. Privately I began to have these thoughts earlier this year and so have decided that now is the time to make my announcement.
"Racing this season has been a real pleasure, especially securing the podium in Canada which was pretty sweet along with a number of other strong races, but now it is time to call it a day.
"I'd like to thank the team for accepting my decision and I wish them all the best for the last race of the year."
Wurz made his Grand Prix debut in Canada in 1997 and spent several years at McLaren as a test driver before joining Williams last year.
He returned to racing this year but has often been unable to match the pace of teammate Nico Rosberg, especially in qualifying.
"I look forward to my future and perhaps the opportunity to pass on my knowledge and skills in Formula One and I have some discussions underway," Wurz added.
"I may also race again, perhaps in Le Mans or other categories and certainly some of my time will now be committed to the very important subject of road safety."
Team boss Frank Williams added: "Alex has made an invaluable contribution to the team for the past two years, first as one of the best test and development drivers the team has ever worked with, and more recently as a race driver.
"This season Alex has had some very strong drives in difficult circumstances and we would like to thank him for all he has contributed. Alex is well known, immensely popular and widely regarded as one of Formula One's gentlemen.
"I am sure I speak for everyone in the paddock when I wish Alex and his family the very best for the future."
Williams said Wurz will not be racing at the season finale in Brazil, and that his replacement will be announced tomorrow.
The British squad have Kazuki Nakajima as their test driver.