Takagi signing doesn't end McNish race hopes

Allan McNish has been told that his chances of landing a full-time drive with Toyota's Formula 1 team in 2002 have not suffered because Tora Takagi has joined the marque in CART

Takagi signing doesn't end McNish race hopes

Takagi, who has traditionally been supported by Honda, has opted to join Toyota because he thinks it offers him the best chance to get back to F1.

However, Toyota's Peter Ball has made it clear that the team will be under no pressure to take a Japanese driver as team mate to Mika Salo when it starts racing.

"We've had discussions about Toyota's preference and, with such a big market in Japan, it would make sense to have a Japanese driver," he said. "But Takagi's deal is for Champ Car racing and there is no agreement between him and us at all. Next year Salo and McNish will test and then Salo will race for us in 2002.

"The second seat is open and no decision has been taken. We are certainly under no pressure to take a Japanese driver," claimed Ball.

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