A social meeting?

BRITISH AMERICAN RACING boss David Richards has recently had an hour-long cup of coffee with none other than Eddie Irvine, lead driver of Jaguar Racing. The pair are reported to have met in an out-of-the-way petrol station near Oxford.

It is probably not a coincidence that Irvine's contract with Jaguar Racing comes to an end this year and that David Richards has two drivers who are reaching the end of their deals: Olivier Panis and Jacques Villeneuve. The latter is believed to be rather unhappy that his pal Craig Pollock was bounced out of the team during the winter and has been talking about the possibility of moving to other teams.

Irvine may not have delivered many results in the last couple of years but the Jaguar has hardly been a competitive car and Irvine has kept in the newspapers only by making outrageous remarks about his rivals.

Richards may not be very interested in signing the Ulsterman for BAR in 2003 although if Villeneuve was to depart Irvine is nearest thing in F1 to the kind of rebel image that Lucky Strike has been trying to promote around Villeneuve.

If such a deal was to happen it would be a very lucky strike for the Ulsterman.

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