Lotus signs Trulli, Kovalainen for 2010
Jarno Trulli and Heikki Kovalainen will race for Lotus when the Malaysian-backed Formula One team returns to the starting grid next season.
Malaysian Sports Minister Ahmad Shabery Cheek told a news conference Monday that Trulli and Kovalainen, who was replaced by F1 champion Jenson Button at McLaren, would drive for the team next season.
The 35-year-old Trulli had been left without a team following Toyota's exit from F1 last month to cut costs and focuses on its core business.
The signing was ``another milestone'' for Lotus, which will be one of five new teams next season, Ahmad Shabery said.
Trulli, a former Jordan and Renault driver, has competed in 216 races since his debut for Minardi in 1997. The Italian's lone victory came at the Canadian Grand Prix in 2004.
Trulli finished on the podium three times last season, scoring 32.5 points to finish eighth in the drivers' championship. He spent just over four seasons with Toyota.
Lotus last raced in 1994. The other five new teams for 2010 are USF1, Campos, Sauber and Manor, which will compete as Virgin Racing.