Da Matta targets drive

Formula 1 refugee Cristiano da Matta has admitted that his return to the Champ Car World Series is not necessarily linked to a drive with his former team Newman/Haas Racing with which he won the title in 2002

Da Matta targets drive

The Brazilian driver, who was dropped from the Toyota Formula 1 team in place of Ricardo Zonta prior to last year's Hungarian Grand Prix, did however say that a drive with Newman/Haas was his primary target.

"I'm planning to race in Champ Cars again," said da Matta. "Obviously my main target is to try to race with Newman/Haas Racing, and we are trying to put a deal together.

"We depend a little bit on some sponsorship deals that are still to be finalised. I'm anxiously waiting on these things to happen. I think my chance to be back with Champ Cars is pretty high. What I'm not sure is where I'm going to be driving at. That's a slightly more difficult question.

Da Matta hinted that his Newman/Haas ride, in a third car alongside reigning champion Sebastien Bourdais and Bruno Junqueira, is dependant on funding.

"All these sponsorship deals, they depend on big companies, and sometimes the decision takes longer than we think it's going to take. Sometimes it's shorter than we think it's going to take. But the process is always complicated, so it is difficult to judge.

"But, I'm pretty sure I'm going to be on the grid for next year. I'm for sure hoping."

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