JUNE 25, 2007

An interesting tester at Spyker

Last week's Silverstone test featured Giedo van der Garde in a Spyker. This raised little interest at the time but was a very significant moment. Prior to this test Van der Garde was barred from testing for Spyker because he was under contract to Super Aguri F1 and could not get a superlicence unless Suzuki agreed. This the team refused to do because of the fight between Super Aguri and Spykeer over the question of chassis design. There were talks in Indianapolis to try to clear up the fight and, obviously, some progress was made. It is not clear exactly what was agreed but if Super Aguri agreed to release Van der Garde, Spyker must have agreed something in exchange, perhaps to back off on the arbitration claim, which the team can ill-afford anyway.

The interesting thing now will be whether or not Van der Garde uses the financial muscle of his girlfriend's father (and Spyker shareholder) Marcel Boekhoorn to oust Christijan Albers from the Spyker race team. Albers has been a big disappointment this year but the team has kept him on because of financial arrangements between Albers, his backers and the team.

If, however, Van der Garde appears with more money, it is logical that Albers will be ejected as he seems unable to compete with F1 rookie Adrian Sutil. Van der Garde may not do any better but if he has more money, he will be more valuable to the team.