Verstappen drops Minardi

The sponsor of Formula 1 driver Jos Verstappen, computer peripheral company Trust, has announced that the Dutch driver will not drive for Minardi next year, nor will it continue its backing of the Anglo-Italian team

Verstappen drops Minardi

In a strongly-worded press release, Trust states that Minardi's lack of technical development was the main factor behind the end of its association. Minardi announced yesterday (Wednesday) that it was on the verge of concluding a deal with Hungarian driver Zsolt Baumgartner for 2004.

The Trust statement read: "After various complex discussions between [Minardi team principal] Paul Stoddart, Trust and the management of Jos regarding the developments within and the future of the Minardi F1 team it has been decided that the partnership with the Minardi F1 team will not continue for another year. All possibilities for Jos within the team were discussed and examined in detail. The lack of confidence, from Trust, Jos Verstappen and his management with regard to positive technical developments from the Minardi team was a major decisive factor."

The statement continued: "Trust, as a manufacturer of technological products, feels it inappropriate to be associated with a team that lacks in technical development and achievements. Despite these aspects, Trust is extremely positive about the achieved commercial results of sponsoring Minardi and would like to thank Paul Stoddart for the his considerable co-operation during the past season."

Minardi boss Stoddart told Reuters earlier today: "He [Verstappen] has still got a chance at Jordan and an outside chance here if something goes wrong. I don't have any issues with Jos. He is too good a driver to just retire."

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