H-HF to Toyota? Arrows bags Jag power?

Paddock rumour at the Nurburgring has linked Jordan star Heinz-Harald Frentzen to a Toyota seat for the company's debut season in Formula 1 in 2002

H-HF to Toyota? Arrows bags Jag power?

Frentzen, who is back behind the wheel for the European Grand Prix after missing the Canadian race a fortnight ago with concussion, is believed to have to make his decision next week.

Sources say the German has a limited window coming up in which to say yes or no to an option on his existing Jordan-Honda contract. Beyond that 24-hour period, thought to end at midnight on Monday, the contract will then revert to its current form which means he stays at Jordan in 2002.

Further speculation suggested that the 34-year-old, who was third in the 1999 world championship, had also considered retirement as an option for 2002.

It is not clear how Frentzen's signing would effect the long-term futures of Mika Salo and test-driver Allan McNish in the Toyota set-up. The Scot had been expected to be promoted to the Cologne-based outfit's race team alongside Salo.

The Arrows team has been linked to a supply of 2001-spec Cosworth V10 engines for next season. Team boss Tom Walkinshaw is believed to be on the verge of signing a deal imminently, which is thought to have been a factor in Jos Verstappen re-committing to the squad.

The deal would not effect Jaguar Racing's status as the sole recipient of works Cosworth units. Cosworth and Jaguar are both owned by Ford.

In the paddock today (Saturday), Cosworth's Nick Hayes said: "A lot of people have come up to me and said, 'I know you can't say anything, but can you tell me about the Arrows rumours?' And I say, 'You're right...I can't say anything.'"

Arrows' current engine-supplier Asiatech is expected to take its Peugeot-based V10s to Prost, which is looking for a cheaper alternative to its existing Ferrari customer engine deal.

More news on Autosport.com as we get it

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