Takuma Sato looks set to land the role as Red Bull's reserve driver for the 2009 season.

Takuma Sato looks set to land the role as Red Bull's reserve driver for the 2009 season.

The Japanese has tested for Toro Rosso this winter, but lost out in the battle for a race seat to French incumbent Sebastien Bourdais.

However, Dietrich Mateschitz is thought still keen to harness the 32-year-old veteran of 93 races' popularity in Japan, a growing market for the energy drink.

Sato would attend all grands prix this year and be ready to replace either Red Bull Racing or Toro Rosso regulars if required.

It has emerged that he may be scheduled to test Toro Rosso's new STR4 car at next week's final test of the pre-season.

In other test news, it is believed Honda has cancelled its scheduled Silverstone shakedown of its 2009 car on Thursday, but the test may now take place on Friday.

The Brackley based team's plan is to then join the group action at Barcelona next week.

 

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