CONSTRUCTORS: SPYKER F1
Name: Spyker F1
In August 2006 the Dutch car company Spyker admitted that it was in talks to buy the Midland F1 team from Canadian-based Russian Alex Shnaider.
Spyker has a heritage that dates back to 1880 when Jacobus and Hendrik-Jan Spijker went into business building carriages. They built their first automobiles in 1898 and were involved in competition from an early stage, notably on the Peking-Paris race in 1907. Later that year Hendrik-Jan Spijker drowned in a shipwreck and the company went bankrupt but the name lived on until 1922 when the company's British distributor saved the company again but in 1929 Spyker went out of business again. It was 70 years before Victor Muller and Maarten de Bruijn decided to revive the name and start building cars. This was financed by selling shares in the business, initially on the Amsterdam Euronext Exchange but later in private deals with a number of Arab corporations.
Spyker was involved in motorsport from the start of its revival with a number of GT cars and ultimately a factory team, known as the Spyker Squadron, running two Spyker C8 Spyders in a programme of 10 GT events in 2006.
The purchase of Midland cost $106.6m and was largely funded by an investment in Spyker Cars from Michiel Mol, who became Spyker's director or F1 racing as a result. The team hired Mike Gascoyne to be its Chief Technology Officer while Colin Kolles remained as the team principal. Christijan Albers was retained and Adrian Sutil hired as his partner.
The team used Ferrari V8 engines in 2007 but the car was not very competitive because of lack of funding. Albers was soon dropped and by the end of the summer it was clear that Spyker Cars needed to sell the team.
Vijay Mallya, an Indian beer and whisky baron, bought the company, renamed it Force India F1, and the history of Spyker in F1 came to an end.