Villeneuve's Future Up to BMW

Former World Champion Jacques Villeneuve has been told that his future Formula One career is now in the hands of BMW following his Sauber's team decision to sell up to the German car manufacturer

Villeneuve's Future Up to BMW

Villeneuve is only in the first season of a two-year deal with the Swiss team and, on the back of a fairly disappointing campaign so far, the change of ownership at the outfit could result in him being bought out of the contract.

The contract of Villeneuve's teammate Felipe Massa runs out at the end of this year.

Team boss Peter Sauber has admitted that the takeover of the outfit now means that BMW will take over the driver contracts and it will be up to them to decide on Villeneuve's fate.

Only last week, Villeneuve said he was looking forward to working together with BMW.

"BMW takes over all the structures of the team, and that includes existing contracts," said Sauber. "Up until the upcoming autumn they will have to decide what to do with them.

"But there are many more decisions to be made before we give the company to BMW. All will happen in close consultation with them."

When asked whether he would have any personal say in the final decision on who will drive for the BMW team in 2006, Sauber said: "No, not at all.

"That is day-to-day business. I find it completely logical that BMW wants to take care of that. They have had not much to say about drivers during the last couple of years and they suffered because of that."

BMW are understood to be chasing at least one big-name star to lead the team in 2006, with Rubens Barrichello, David Coulthard and Nick Heidfeld all believed to be targets.

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Series Formula 1
Drivers Jacques Villeneuve
Author Jonathan Noble
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