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Paffett and Jordan

The French weekly magazine Autohebdo is reporting that Jordan Grand Prix is looking at some kind of a deal with rising star Gary Paffett. Paffett is currently leading the German Formula 3 Championship but Autohebdo's reasoning is that the McLaren protege fits the profile of what Benson & Hedges is looking for - and his inclusion in the Jordan team next year could result in sponsorship worth $12m.

It is an interesting theory but our sources say that Benson & Hedges is not particularly interested in a new star but would be quite happy to support the team if Eddie Irvine was signed up. This would seem to back up our recent stories suggesting that Irvine has already done a deal with Ford to race for Jordan next year. The team has not denied this story. Nor, for that matter, has Ford.

Eddie Jordan says that he has deals for next year with Giancarlo Fisichella and Takuma Sato but no-one in F1 seems to think that this will be the driver line-up next year.

Time will tell.