Prodrive out of frame at Reynard

Plans for Prodrive to buy Reynard Motorsport have fallen through, leaving company founder Adrian Reynard seeking alternative funding in his bid to buy a majority stake in the British American Racing Formula 1 team

Prodrive out of frame at Reynard

Sources say that talks between Reynard and Prodrive boss David Richards had reached a 'semi-advanced' stage, but that Richards ceased negotiations prior to last weekend's Malaysian Grand Prix.

Reynard, British American Tobacco and current team boss Craig Pollock founded the Brackley-based BAR team in 1998 and are its three share-holding parties. But leaked documents published in F1 Racing magazine this month revealed that Reynard is heading an eight-man group hoping to secure BAT's shares, thereby taking a majority stake and wresting control from Pollock. BAT's share is rumoured to be valued at US$100 million, with Reynard's group of companies said to be worth in the order of US$50 million.

A BAR board meeting is scheduled for November 1, but Pollock insists that his position in the team will remain unchanged, regardless of whether Reynard and his group secure alternative financing.

"Any takeover bid is a lost cause," he told Autosport's sister publication, Motoring News. To sell even one per cent of the company, we have to have full shareholder approval.

"BAT can't sell its shareholding without my approval and I can't sell mine without theirs. It's stalemate and I have no intention of letting anything like this happen."

BAR's engine-supplier and technical partner Honda has also been linked to a potential buy-out of the team in 2002, but Pollock says he is angry at the current spate of rumour and speculation.

"The timing of it is pathetic, because the team needs absolute stability," he said. "That's what disappoints me - the only thought I have is to keep stability in the team."

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