SEPTEMBER 27, 1999

Jaguar sniffing around for 2001

THE Jaguar Sport Formula 1 team is already making waves as Jaguar management is beginning its campaign to attract some top names to the team for 2001. We have already heard suggestions that Jaguar would like to see Heinz-Harald Frentzen signed up alongside Eddie Irvine in 2001. Frentzen would be a useful recruit as Jaguar's main European market is Germany and Frentzen is currently in the spotlight.

There have also been suggestions that Jaguar management have been trying to convince Ferrari's Ross Brawn to leave the Italian team to take up the role of team director in 2001. This would not be a technical role and this may appeal to Brawn who is more of a technical organizer than an actual designer.

Jackie Stewart hit out at rumors that had suggested that he might be replaced as head of Jaguar Sport, saying that he will continue to be chairman and chief executive of the team for at least the next 16 months.

Stewart said that stories that he would be replaced by David Richards were "nonsense" and said that when Ford bought the team it was agreed that he and his son Paul Stewart would be staying on.

This does not explain the political battles in recent weeks between Stewart and Martin Whitaker - Ford's European Motorsport supremo - but it is clear that Stewart has won those battles as Whitaker is moving over to concentrate on rallying next year.

Johnny Herbert's victory at the Nurburgring will, of course, have done Stewart's reputation at Ford no harm at all and so we would not expect there to be any changes until the current contracts come up for discussion at the end of next year.