APRIL 5, 2006

Toyota confirms Gascoyne "suspension"

Toyota has announced that technical director Mike Gascoyne has been suspended indefinitely after what the Japanese team described as a "fundamental difference of opinion".

This is not entirely correct as after six months Gascoyne can pretty much do as he pleases as legally-speaking it is a long-established precedent that Formula 1 engineers can only be kept to contracts for six months because to try to hold them for longer impinges on their ability to keep up to date with the fast-moving technology of F1. Thus Gascoyne may have a contract with Toyota until the end of 2007 but the Japanese firm cannot hold him beyond September, at which point he is free to work elsewhere. The next six months is therefore going to be spent in negotiations of how a financial settlement can be made.