Champ Car racing's top dogs Juan Montoya and Dario Franchitti are set to continue their head to head in Formula 1 next year.
Reigning champion Montoya is primed to leave Chip Ganassi's squad and join Williams F1, as exclusively predicted in AUTOSPORT magazine (June 8), and comments by team principal Frank Williams in Canada only reinforced that scenario. But the Colombian could now be joined in a Stateside exodus by Franchitti, who will test for Jaguar before the end of the season with a view to making the switch to F1 in 2001, according to sources close to the team.
"From what I've seen on TV this year, I think he's ready to move on," said Williams of Montoya. "Twenty-six or 27 is late in life to learn to drive in F1. Pure talent alone won't nudge Michael Schumacher aside."
Montoya, 24, would move into that bracket should he stay with Ganassi Racing for a third term in 2001, but Williams has an option to buy Montoya out of Ganassi at the end of the season, and AUTOSPORT magazine understands that Ganassi Racing will release its driver if asked.
Franchitti's potential Jaguar test comes as a surprise. Many observers think that the Scot's most obvious route into Formula 1 would be at BAR, given his existing links with Honda, Reynard and British American Tobacco (owner of Team Green's main sponsor, Kool cigarettes) and the continuing reliability problems at Jaguar Racing.
Hungary / Results
Standings / After 11 races
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