BMW: No Sauber Buyout

Williams' engine supplier BMW has shot down rumours that they have agreed a $270 million (US Dollars) deal to buy the Sauber Formula One team while refusing to rule out the possibility of a future deal

BMW: No Sauber Buyout

Reports in the Circuit Gilles Villeneuve suggested on Friday that BMW had stepped on from plans to supply engines to the team and concluded a much-anticipated deal to buy the team outright.

But BMW motorsport boss Mario Theissen insisted: "We do not have any agreement so far. We had several meetings, talks are going on and I expect a positive result, which means an agreement."

Theissen refused to comment on whether that agreement would be purely supply or team ownership but recent rumours suggest the relationship between BMW and Williams could now be irreparable.

Problems with the relationship were heightened earlier this week when comments from Williams owner Patrick Head were quoted by Italy's Sport Auto Moto, in which he accused BMW of being dishonest.

Head was quoted as criticising BMW for not sharing the blame for the team's poor early season performance and both Theissen and team principal Sir Frank Williams refused to comment further when asked in Montreal.

BMW currently supply the Williams team with engines but earlier this year began discussions with both Red Bull Racing and Sauber over possible supply deals for 2006 and beyond.

Red Bull have now signed with Ferrari for next year leaving Sauber, who currently run with Ferrari, needing a new supplier and BMW are believed to have discussed the possibility of ditching Williams completely.

Sauber denied the suggestion that a deal is already done and a spokesman said: "Everyone knows that we are in discussions and we expect to reach an agreement in June. This story of a sale is not true."

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