Zonta Slams BAR for Lack of Support

Brazilian Ricardo Zonta, who lost his drive with the BAR Formula One team at the end of last season, has criticised his former employers.

Zonta Slams BAR for Lack of Support

Brazilian Ricardo Zonta, who lost his drive with the BAR Formula One team at the end of last season, has criticised his former employers.

Zonta, now the Formula One test driver for Jordan after being replaced by Frenchman Olivier Panis, said his confidence had been undermined at BAR.

"I lost confidence in my machine and myself," Zonta was quoted as saying in Autosport on Thursday. "The situation worsened because of the environment at the team.

"Instead of finding support and comfort with Jacques Villeneuve and (team boss) Craig Pollock, I found critical remarks which were unjustified.

"And from there the personal errors multiplied.

"I will never return to a team whose driver is a World Champion and whose owner is also the manager and best friend of this driver. I suffered too much."

Zonta, 24, scored three points for BAR last season but was also involved in some spectacular crashes. Canadian Villeneuve, the 1997 World Champion with Williams, scored seventeen.

Villeneuve openly criticised Zonta in July after the two drivers came together on the track at the German Grand Prix, saying the Brazilian had cost the team three points.

"There was an incident with my teammate and I have to say that I don't have much respect for him as a result," Villeneuve said after that race, the eleventh of the seventeen Grands Prix.

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