Stewart: Jag bosses need time to settle

Jackie Stewart says the American management duo at the helm of the Jaguar Formula 1 team could take another year before they get the Cat into its stride

Stewart: Jag bosses need time to settle

Former CART boss Bobby Rahal has been brought in to oversee the day-to-day running of Jaguar Racing and starts as CEO on Friday, allowing chairman Neil Ressler to concentrate on the overall direction of the Milton Keynes-based outfit. But Stewart believes the pairing may not be fully settled until 2002.

"You would have to say for both Neil and Bobby, and also Jaguar, that they are still learning what they could, should and can't do," Stewart exclusively told Autosport.com. "And that learning curve will continue for a period of time until everybody's got their waters settled. That may take another year."

The triple world champion sold his Stewart Grand Prix team to Ford in 1999 and the Blue Oval decided to use the team to bring the Jaguar name back to Formula 1. However, the team has had a disappointing year scoring just four points, finishing ahead of only Minardi and Prost.

Various measures are being put in place to ensure next year is more successful, mainly through recruiting new key members of staff, such as aerodynamicist Mark Handford and Ferrari's chief mechanic Nigel Stepney.

Stewart is the first to admit the outfit's shortcomings, but believes its longer-term prospects are much brighter.

"I think it's been a disappointing year for everybody, and it would be wrong to say otherwise," he said. "But the future is, I think, considerably more positive. The investment they [Ford] have made is big. The Jaguar name is only going to get better."

Stewart intends to step back yet further from running the team this year, but not from the limelight as the winner of 27 Grands Prix is tipped to be among those on the New Years' honours list and could become 'Sir Jackie Stewart' in 2001.

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