Wilson's Jaguar plan fails - for now

A deal that would have seen Minardi driver Justin Wilson in the second Jaguar alongside Mark Webber for the rest of the season fell apart on Saturday evening at Silverstone

Wilson's Jaguar plan fails - for now

The plan was that Wilson would replace Antonio Pizzonia, who came under pressure for his place in the team just four races into the season, and who ironically outqualified Webber for only the third time this year at Silverstone. It seems that Pizzonia's contract proved water-tight, but the fact that the intent was there bodes well for a Jaguar move by Wilson, who has also been linked with Jordan, next year.

On the subject of next season, Minardi boss Paul Stoddart said: "I've been asked whether Justin will be in F1 next year and I said absolutely, categorically. The next question was will he be with Minardi and I said not necessarily.

"I'm quite proud of the job we've done with young drivers. If you move them on to another team a) it's an asset and we get something out of it, and b) I quite like the idea of building up our little portfolio of drivers in F1. We've got the most now - five [Mark Webber, Fernando Alonso, Wilson, Jarno Trulli and Giancarlo Fisichella all started their F1 careers with Minardi] - Jordan has got four [the Schumachers, Rubens Barrichello and Ralph Firman], so between us we've got half the grid."

Alexander Wurz has also been linked to Jaguar for 2004, with support from Superfund, the racing arm of the Austrian-based Quadriga asset management company.

Stoddart said: "Justin has a decent shout at Jaguar but they are probably spoilt for choice. I'm sure Alex is talking to them and it wouldn't be hard for him to have Superfund backing but I don't think that in itself would be the be all and end all."

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