APRIL 8, 2005
Jacques Villeneuve and Sauber
Jacques Villeneuve's press release yesterday was important in that it existed. For some reason Jacques felt the need to explain the current situation at Sauber, something which in any normal circumstance the team would have done if it felt such a thing was necessary. Changing a driver in testing is not unusual in F1 and teams rarely feel the need to explain the logic behind such a move. Circumstances are always changing.
Villeneuve's press statement not only detailed the decision but also included details of things the team would not normally wish to see published. There was also implied criticism of the team for having chosen to run Felipe Massa rather than allowing him to focus on set-up work for Imola. Villeneuve predicted that Imola will be "a continuation of the first three races", an opinion which is really not designed to motivate the team behind him.
All things considered the statement can only be seen as confirmation that all is not well, even if Villeneuve tried to head off such speculation by saying that he felt sure that the situation would inspire "a new set of rumours". This being the case it would have been logical not to say anything.
The question that needs to be answered now is why he felt that this would be constructive as there is no logical explanation for such a release.
Indeed, the cynics in F1 might say that the only possible explanation is that Villeneuve is creating "a paper trail" to protect himself in case he is dismissed by the team at some point in the future and wants to fight a legal action.
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