Walker could still race in 2008

Walker Racing team owner Derrick Walker has suggested that his team could make it on to the IRL IndyCar Series grid this season after all, despite announcing on Sunday that his plans had fallen through

Walker could still race in 2008

With former partner Craig Gore splitting with Walker to join forces with KV Racing - taking driver Will Power and his Australian funding with him - Walker believed he would be unable to fund an IndyCar programme.

But he has now suggested that alternative sponsorship might be available for at least a partial season, and that he is determined to be back in American open wheel racing by 2009 at the latest.

"After the statement we made on Sunday regarding our IndyCar effort, we have had tremendous support and a number of inquiries that may produce some ability to compete in the IndyCar Series on some level whether it be a full or half season," Walker wrote in a statement on his website.

"At least it will give us the chance to compete at some capacity. We remain cautiously optimistic.

"We are not out of racing by any means. There is a huge mountain to climb, but if I can get the job done in time we will be there at Homestead.

"I will not kid you, it will be tough. The Atlantic programme will definitely continue, and we are looking at A1GP to possibly help out some other race teams and take that time to work our way back to IndyCar in 2009.

"It's the best time to be in open wheel racing and we want to get back as soon as we can."

Walker admitted that he was shocked by Gore's decision to end their Team Australia partnership.

"Up until a few days ago, I was of the belief, because of commitments that had been previously made to me, that we were to continue the Team Australia programme into 2008," he said.

"In addition, we had other new sponsorship opportunities that were progressing towards an agreement but, suddenly, both deals evaporated in the span of two days.

"Faced with that situation, I met with the employees and advised them of the difficult road ahead and the fact that we were starting all over again with new sponsor relationships.

"As of right now, these commitments and new opportunities have ruined the great plans we had been working on for the last two months.

"Although the Team Australia programme and relationship with Craig Gore has ended, as well as his commitment to move forward with us into IndyCar, Walker Racing is not out of business, nor have we thrown in the towel.

"As for my partnership with Craig Gore, we have some loose ends to sort out, which Craig has assured me they will be taken care of.

"Through these last couple of years, Craig had the passion for the Team Australia programme and time will tell if Craig will stay in IndyCar, but for us it was unfortunately the end of the Team Australia partnership. It is part of the business we are in today. Things change and we have to move on."

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