Sato looking to find way back into F1
|By Pablo Elizalde||Tuesday, May 27th 2008, 09:28 GMT|
Takuma Sato says he remains determined to return to Formula One racing following the demise of the Super Aguri team earlier this season.
The Japanese driver, along with former teammate Anthony Davidson, was left without a drive after Super Aguri announced they were withdrawing from Formula One right before the Spanish Grand Prix.
Since then Sato has met with Honda's representatives - including the team's operating officer Hiroshi Oshima - to talk about his plans for the future and the driver said the Japanese company would like to stay associated with him.
Sato said, however, that nothing has been finalised yet, but the 31-year-old has made it clear his intention is to return to grand prix racing.
"No plan as yet," Sato said. "It is a blank sheet of paper. I did feel they (Honda) would like to be associated with me but that does not necessarily relate to their F1 project.
"I have my own ideas and before I went over to see him (Oshima) I did already tell him of my feelings but I wanted to see him in person.
"I believe I can bring out my best performance. I proved what I could do with Aguri. I am still competitive so I am looking for a way to come back to F1."
The Japanese racer admitted he is ready to wait until 2009 to return to racing, but has not ruled out accepting a test driver role if it leads to a racing seat in the future.
"If there is an opportunity I want to race now," he said. "But I am not that desperate to race at any cost this season. If there is a chance I would like to, but if 2009 is better opportunity I will wait.
"I would not like to rush out to make a hasty decision. I would like a proper opportunity, and if testing is required (for 2009) then I am prepared to test."
And Sato played down rumours linking him with a seat at the Renault team to replace Nelsinho Piquet, who is believed to be under pressure to raise his game following a shaky start to the season.
"As a driver I do welcome such rumours," Sato added. "I think this time last year I was going to replace Ralf (Schumacher) in Toyota. When I am ready I will let you know."
Both Sato and Davidson are believed to be on the list of possible candidates to replace Piquet if the Brazilian fails to improve his form.
Renault, however, are committed to helping Piquet and the young driver is scheduled to run during all three days of testing at Barcelona next month.