Vitaly Alexandrovich Petrov
(, born September 8, 1984 in Vyborg
) is a Russian Formula One racing driver
, currently driving for the Lotus Renault GP
team. He is known as "Vyborg Rocket" () in Russia. He is, to date, the only Russian to have competed in the Formula One World Championship.
Unlike most top drivers, Petrov did not begin his career in karting
, as there was very little motorsport where he lived. He began competing in the Russian Lada
Cup in 2001. He remained in the series for 2002 and dominated the championship, winning all rounds and amassing the maximum points possible of 500.
In 2003, Petrov began racing in Formula Renault
, racing in the Italian Championship
for Euronova Racing
, finishing 19th overall. He also competed in some rounds of the Eurocup Formula Renault 2.0
. He also finished fourth in the British Formula Renault Winter Series
at the end of the year, taking one win. He also made his debut in Euro Formula 3000
Return to Russia
In 2004, Petrov turned his attention to the inaugural season of the Russian Lada Revolution championship. He started every race from pole...