Jag boss optimistic over future

Jaguar Racing team principal Tony Purnell is hopeful that the team can generate additional funding to guarantee the long-term future of the Ford-owned Formula 1 team

Jag boss optimistic over future

Jaguar entered Formula 1 in 2000 and, after three tough and relatively unsuccessful years riddled by a lack of cohesive management structure, faced a crucial moment two years ago when it was widely anticipated that Ford management in the USA was about to pull the plug.

Similar rumours exist once again in the F1 paddock, with the word that Ford has delayed approval of the 2005 programme until there are assurances of additional sponsorship revenue.

Purnell explained recently that work on next year's R6 had been interrupted by indecision on the '05 rule changes, with front wing changes meaning that considerable R&D work was no longer valid. Others, however, have suggested that there are more fundamental reasons.

Purnell said in Hungary: "I think you'll find Ford is doing okay and when they decided to stick with this two years ago, it could not have been a worse time. They were facing meltdown and now they've recovered quite well. And, tell me if I'm wrong, but I think generally, the way this team is run now, is admired."

He admitted, however, that he could not give cast-iron assurances that the team would be on the grid next year. As for the prospect of generating additional sponsorship revenue, however, he was positive, despite the expected loss of HSBC at the end of the year.

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