Q & A with Jarno Trulli

Q. John Howett made some comments last week regarding your future and that it is likely that you would not be kept on next year suggesting that it is related to your pay demands. What is your response to that?

Jarno Trulli: I don't think that I need to respond to anything. The situation is very clear. The team cannot decide on anything. John apologised to me in the evening for what has been said but the truth is that the team has not got budget approval for next season so we cannot decide on anyone - the drivers as well as people in the team. The priority is to stay with Toyota, so we will see what we can do for the future with them. Obviously I have some contacts with other teams.

Q. If the budget is not signed off until November, does that therefore mean that you can wait until then?

JT: This means that they cannot decide for anyone until then - drivers, on the engineering side or the technical side. It is not an easy thing to handle for a team. Obviously we have got a lot of people working here and it is important to keep the team alive. I'm concerned - in F1 anything can happen. We have to be ready for any kind of opportunity.

Q. Are you actively searching for other opportunities?

JT: I have had contact with other teams, but it's still early.

Q. What if you had a solid offer from another team - could you then afford to wait for Toyota's decision?

JT: No one has a solid offer for next year at the moment - or very few have. We only have a few solid teams in F1. On the other hand, it's a bit too early to talk about contracts nowadays because of the economic situation. Obviously I don't think that there are many drivers that can talk about the future in a clear way. Some can, but there are many others that are uncertain.

Q. Any contact with Williams?

JT: I have had some contacts with teams, but it's too early to talk about anything. It's not a question of having a good offer. The question is that Toyota has been my family for the last few years and I have such a good relationship with them, on the Japanese side, with John Howett, with everyone.

It's like my family. My priority has to be to stay with Toyota. I don't understand what is going on in the team - so we cannot talk about the future. The most important thing is that we can keep the team alive and continue because there are a lot of people working here with families.

Q. Can this team finally deliver wins next year if it continues?

JT: It's difficult to comment on next year. This year we started very well, but in the last few races we don't understand what is going on because we are really up and down.

Q. If Toyota didn't continue next year, what would be the most important factory in attracting you to other teams?

JT: We'll see. At the moment it is too early to say. F1 is changing a lot and it's changing in the fact that there are less and less top teams. It's a difficult decision. Everybody wants to win, but we know very well that only a few teams can win and the rest are struggling.

Q. You are one of about 50 drivers who have been linked with the Ferrari seat in the press recently. Is that even a remote possibility?

JT: No, absolutely not! I have a contract with Toyota to the end of the season. I get on very well with them and I'm more than happy to stay here. We have a good relationship. I don't know where these rumours coming from. It's probably just because I am Italian.

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