DECEMBER 18, 2008
An interesting rumour
The stories that Williams F1 might test Formula 3 driver Ricardo Teixeira have been denied by the team, which seems a little confused as to how they started. The reports seem to have orginated in the Jornal des Desportes in Luanda, Angola, the native country of Teixeira and are either wishful thinking on the part of the locals or inside information that has leaked out unexpectedly. The reports suggested that the test would take place in January.
It may be that Williams is taking a look at Teixeira's sponsor, the partially state-owned oil company Sonangol. The company manages all of Angola's oil and gas production. The former Portuguese colony is the largest oil producer in sub-Saharan Africa after Nigeria, but for years the profits from oil were used to pay for a disastrous civil war. This ended in 2002 and since then the country has been rebuilding but still replies heavily on oil with around 85% of all government revenue coming from the industry. Much of the money in recent years has been spent on repairing the country's infrastructure but there are plans for new industries, notably the tourist trade.
It is a little-known fact that there is a racing circuit in Angola that was built for Grands Prix racing, albeit back in the 1970s before the civil war began.