NEWS ARCHIVE

25 OCTOBER 1999

BRANDS HATCH BECOMES TAKEOVER TARGET

BRANDS HATCH LEISURE PLC, the company which runs the Brands Hatch racing circuit in England, has confirmed that it has received a "preliminary approach" that could lead to a takeover bid.

KAISER LEAVES SAUBER

AS exclusively predicted by INSIDE F1, the Sauber team has now confirmed that Fritz Kaiser has sold his stake in the team to team founder Peter Sauber and major shareholder Dietrich Mateschitz, the boss of the Red Bull energy drink company.

KENNETT GOES BUT MELBOURNE GP SAFE

THE Victorian state premier Jeff Kennett, the man who lured Grand Prix racing to Melbourne, resigned last week after it became clear that he would not be able to form a new state government.

NISSAN TAKES THE PLUNGE

THE Nissan Motor Company announced last week that it is closing five factories and cutting 21,000 jobs as part of its restructuring plan.

PANIS TESTS FOR MCLAREN

WHILE most of the Formula 1 drivers stayed out in Asia after the Malaysian Grand Prix, Luca Badoer and Olivier Panis flew back to Europe to undertake testing work, Badoer for Ferrari and Panis for McLaren.

THE MALAYSIAN MESS UNRAVELLED

THE FIA International Court of Appeal has overturned the exclusion of the Ferrari team from the results of the MalaysianÊGrandÊPrix, a move which means that Eddie Irvine goes to the final round of the year with a four point advantage over Finland's Mika Hakkinen.

TOBACCO ROLLS WITH THE PUNCHES

AN appeals court in Miami, Florida, has dealt the tobacco industry another harsh blow by ruling that tobacco companies cannot stop the jury which found them guilty of fraud and conspiracy in July, from awarding a lump sum of damages to be shared among the thousands people involved in a class action brought by sick smokers and the families of those who have died from tobacco-related diseases.

TYRRELL BUSINESS STILL IN THE COURTS

THE Tyrrell Formula 1 team may have disappeared a year ago but business related to the operation is still being settled.

18 OCTOBER 1999

A MESS IN MALAYSIA

MIKA HAKKINEN is the 1999 Formula 1 World Champion - at least on paper.

ARROWS CHASING MONTOYA OR FRANCHITTI

TOM WALKINSHAW is keeping his cards close to his chest as usual but we believe that the boss of the Arrows Formula 1 team has set his sights on hiring either Juan-Pablo Montoya or Dario Franchitti, depending on which one wins the CARTÊChampionship this year.

ENGINEERS ON THE MOVE

A number of senior Formula 1 engineers are on the move in the weeks ahead with the major player being Dr. John Davis, who has been head of research and development at Jordan Grand Prix for the last couple of years.

FORD'S MOTOR RACING CAMPUS

THE Ford Motor Company is close to a deal to acquire land on which it will build its planned motor racing campus - and despite a variety of rumors it seems that it will be at the Gateway Park industrial estate, just outside Northampton.

FRENCH GRAND PRIX PROBLEMS

THERE are renewed doubts about the future of the French Grand Prix following the revelation that the international automobile federation is involved in a serious dispute with the French tax authorities and the governing body of motor sport may decide that it does not want to be involved in any activities in France until the problems are solved.

HONDA AND BAR

BRITISH AMERICAN RACING continues to chase a World Championship point in Malaysia, but the retirements of both JacquesÊVilleneuve and Ricardo Zonta meant that the Brackley team again failed to score and with only the Japanese GP remaining looks likely to go into next season without the benefit of television and travel money.

PANIS FOR MCLAREN?

OLIVIER PANIS says he is not going to sign for the Arrows team but says he has a chance of an interesting job in FormulaÊ1 next year.

PENSKE AND ILMOR

AMERICAN racing magnate Roger Penske has announced that his CART team will run with Honda engines next season after two seasons without a victory with Mercedes-Benz.

TELEFONICA AND MINARDI

THE Spanish telecommunications company Telefonica and the Minardi team have announced their intention to work together more closely in the future - but details of the arrangement have yet to be hammered out.

TOYOTA TO GRAB 12TH TEAM STATUS FOR 2002

THE Toyota Motor Corporation has now officially confirmed that it is closing down its World Rally Championship program at the end of the season.

WATT BADLY HURT IN MOTORBIKE CRASH

FORMULA 1 hopeful Jason Watt is in a critical condition in a hospital in Copenhagen, Denmark, following a motorcycle accident while he was doing a photographic shoot for a Danish motorcycle magazine.

11 OCTOBER 1999

ANOTHER F1 CALENDAR

THE FIA World Motor Sport Council, which met in Paris last week, announced a variety of calendars for the 2000 season but the Formula 1 dates were less than conclusive with six races still to be settled.

ARROWS AND LOTUS

IN recent days there has been some speculation that David Hunt - the owner of the Team Lotus name - has been having talks with Tom Walkinshaw of the Arrows team about joining forces.

CHIP GANASSI, TOYOTA AND DAVID SEARS

THE rumor in the United States that Chip Ganassi is planning to run a second team in CART next season has led to suggestions that there will be some European involvement in the planned team, which will be based in Ganassi's existing premises while his Target Chip Ganassi Racing operation will move to a new purpose-built facility in Indianapolis.

FIA CONFIRMS $48M BOND

THE FIA World Motor Sport Council has confirmed the $48m bond which prospective Formula 1 team owners will have to pay if they wish to join the 11 teams in the Formula 1 World Championship.

FINAL EUROPEAN TESTING

THE major F1 teams have been busy testing in preparation for the final two races of the season in Malaysia and Japan.

HONDA TO TRY MINASSIAN

WE understand that Honda is to run one of the prototype Formula 1 chassis built earlier this year by the now-defunct HRD operation at Pembrey, in Wales, later this week.

LORD HESKETH RESIGNS

LORD HESKETH, the President of the British Racing Drivers' Club - which controls the Silverstone racing circuit - has resigned.

MORE CONSOLIDATION IN THE TOBACCO INDUSTRY

THE European Union tobacco ban may mean little to most F1 teams by the time it arrives in 2006 - as the tobacco industry is currently contracting at such a rate that the number of sponsors available is reducing fast.

OTHER FIA DECISIONS

THE FIA World Council also introduced a number of detailed changes to the existing Formula 1 sporting regulations.

SCHUMACHER GIVES WAY TO ITALIAN PRESSURE

HAVING said that sitting out the last two races of the year was "the only reasonable decision", Michael Schumacher decided at the end of the week to be unreasonable and agreed to race in Malaysia and Japan to support Eddie Irvine's bid for the Formula 1 World Championship.

SWEDEN'S GRAND PRIX DREAMS

SWEDISH newspapers are reporting that Sweden is considering a bid to host a Grand Prix in 2005 or 2006.

THE FRENCH GP STAYS AT MAGNY-COURS UNTIL 2004

THE FIA announced last week that the French Grand Prix will be staying at Magny-Cours until after the 2004 event.

4 OCTOBER 1999

A RAY OF HOPE FOR THE BELGIAN GRAND PRIX

THE Belgian Grand Prix may win back its place in the Formula 1 calendar next year thanks to a decision by the Belgian court of arbitration.

BRANDS HATCH MAKES A BIG PROFIT

BRANDS HATCH LEISURE revealed a profit of $3m for the first six months of 1999 and the company - which hopes to host the British Grand Prix at Brands Hatch in 2002, says that the figure for the second half of the year will be even better thanks to income from the World Super Bike Championship event which was held in August.

CHANGES AT BAR

THERE has been a lot of fuss in recent days about the appointment of Ian Ross as chief operating officer at BritishÊAmericanÊRacing.

DUDOT LEAVING PROST

PROST GRAND PRIX's former technical director Bernard Dudot is expected to leave the French team at the end of the year.

ECCLESTONE BUYING BARCELONA?

WE hear whispers that Formula 1 boss Bernie Ecclestone is to continue acquiring racing circuits to give FormulaÊOneÊHoldings some more assets and, at the same time, to secure the long-term television rights as these ultimately belong to circuit owners.

FERRARI STANDS BY TODT AND BRAWN

THE Ferrari debacle at the European Grand Prix at the Nurburgring - and the performance in recent races of the FerrariÊF399 in the hands of Eddie Irvine and Mika Salo - has led the livelier elements of the Italian media to call for the resignation of the team's sporting and technical directors Jean Todt and Ross Brawn.

LVMH INVESTS IN PROST

AS we predicted in June, Alain Prost has formed an alliance with Bernard Arnault, the chairman and chief executive of the Louis Vuitton Moet Hennessy empire.

SCHUMACHER OUT FOR THE REST OF THE YEAR

Michael Schumacher will not be returning to Formula 1 this season.

TESTING AROUND EUROPE

WITH the last of the European races out of the way, the Formula 1 teams are beginning to turn their attention to the development programs for the cars which will be raced next year, although McLaren, Ferrari and Jordan are all rushing ahead with 1999 development as they battle to see who will win this year's title.

THE FUTURE OF MAX MOSLEY

WE have heard whispers in recent days that FIA President Max Mosley may quit his job before he comes up for re-election when his current term of office ends in October 2001.

TOYOTA ACCELERATING F1 PLANS?

THE Toyota Motor Corporation has confirmed that it is shutting down its World Rally Championship team in Cologne at the end of the current season.