Fernandez calls time

IRL IndyCar Series team owner Adrian Fernandez has finally conceded that he will not drive for the full season this year after admitting that he has failed to raise the necessary budget to run a third car

Fernandez calls time

Just 24 hours after Fernandez signed up Scott Sharp as team-mate to Kosuke Matsuura, Fernandez has now given up on his dreams of becoming the series' only driver-owner - although there remains the possibility that he could take part in the occasional event.

"I am proud of our accomplishments in our first season of IRL competition," said Fernandez. "Three wins and fifth in the championship showed the strength and maturity of the team we began four years ago.

"However, as we enter a new season, I am faced with the hard fact that I do not have the necessary budget to compete in 2005. Given our current situation with the start of the new season just over two months away and, as necessary to keep the team intact and functioning at maximum levels, the team will focus its attention on Scott Sharp and Kosuke Matsuura.

"I enjoyed one of the best seasons of my career in 2004. As a driver, I feel I have a lot left to offer. I am working hard to be able to race again as soon as possible."

Fernandez's three victories last season came after he achieved considerable success in Champ Car - winning eight races and finishing runner-up in the 2000 championship to Gil de Ferran.

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