Former Williams driver Sergey Sirotkin has been named executive director of the Russian Automobile Federation.

The 26-year old has taken over from Sergey Ivanov and will report to federation president Viktor Kiryanov, who has held the position since 2003.

The former F1 driver took over the role on May 1, but the official announcement was not made until Thursday.

“Friends, I’ve said it many times that my mission and target is the development and growth in popularity of auto racing in our country and I’ve been actively working on that for several years,” Sirotkin wrote on Instagram.

“Today I am sharing with you another piece of news, no less exciting and important to me – recently I was appointed as the executive director of the Russian Automobile Federation.”

“I believe that together we can get to the next stage in the development of auto racing in our country!”

Sirotkin only scored one point in his sole season as a full-time F1 driver in the uncompetitive Williams FW41 in 2018, and has since worked as a reserve driver for Renault, Williams, and McLaren while also competing in the World Endurance Championship.

Prior to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, he appeared to have shifted his primary focus to non-driving activities, such as his Moscow-based karting academy and it was even said that his driving career was basically over.

His long-time sponsor SMP Racing, on the other hand, claimed he was in the process of securing an international racing return in the GT World Challenge Endurance Cup for 2022, which it claims was thwarted due to the FIA’s demands during the Ukraine war for Russian drivers to race under neutral status and formally agree to a set of FIA-prescribed conditions.

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