NOVEMBER 2, 2005
Aguri and intellectual property
Aguri Suzuki faces a problem in getting his chassis designed in time to start the 2006 Formula 1 World Championship season. But that might not be quite as big a problem as some would imagine. The rules, or at least what we believe the rules to be (given that the rules are actually secret as they are part of the Concorde Agreement), state that the parts of the car must not be designed or manufactured by another constructor. They can be built by an independent, non-competing third party but a team must have the intellectual property rights to its car.
One way to get around this problem is for Suzuki to buy the intellectual property rights to a car, the constructor of which is no longer involved in F1. One might argue that the constructor of the 2005 BAR will not be in the World Championship next year but as the entity is the same (ie the company has the same company number) this may not be an option.
However, we hear that the best solution may be offered by former Minardi boss Paul Stoddart, who bought the intellectual property rights to the old Arrows team a few years ago when he was trying to upgrade his team cheaply. If Stoddart was to sell the Arrows IPRs to Suzuki the team could modify the drawings and get to work building a chassis. We have heard suggestions that Panoz might also be able to provide some assistance, doing sub-contract composite lay-up.
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