OCTOBER 6, 2004
The new Formula 1 team
There has been a lot of talk about the new Formula 1 team which may be announced this weekend in Japan - but a lot of the stories (including some of our own) have been rathe wide of the mark. One thing which is now certain is that the team does not involve Canadian steelmaker Dofasco but rather a group of wealthy Russian businessmen, who are now Canadian citizens, and who made their money in steel but have since diversified. They are understood to have links to the Formula 3 team owner Colin Kolles, who runs works teams in the Formula 3 Euro Cup series for both Toyota and Mercedes-Benz, and are being represented in the negotiations but Christian Geistdorfer (rather than Christopher as some reports have been suggesting). Geistdorfer is a wellknown figure in motorsport circles and is best known as Walter Rohrl's co-driver in the World Rally Championship the Audi team in the early 1980s. In recent years Geistdorfer has been running sponsorship operations in F1, mainly with German companies.
Wht is clear is that billionaire Roman Abramovich is not directly involved in the team although he was interested in taking over Jordan a year or so ago and tried to convince Mercedes-Benz to team up with Jordan, using the Smart brand for the Jordan engines.
The big question is whether or not the consortium has done the logical thing and decided to buy Jaguar Racing and Cosworth ather than starting a team completely from scratch. There seems to be little problem with money as we hear that the people involved have large amounts available from their various enterprises around the world.
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