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Saturday, February 21, 2009

Branson finally speaks

We've heard a lot about Virgin boss Sir Richard Branson's interest in F1, especially through Bernie Ecclestone, but until now, the tycoon was eerily quiet on the subject.

Finally, he speaks, via Sky. And he doesn't necessarily sound as keen as Bernie might like us all to believe.

"I love Formula One. I think that there are faults there that would need to be rectified before we moved into Formula One," he said.

Key among Branson's interests, Bernie in control and a promise of a "greener" championship.

F1 Nov 2008

Time is quickly running out, with little over a month before the 2009 season kicks off in Melbourne, an engine deal waiting to be finalized, jobs at stake and a management team waiting for an answer on its own buyout bid.

Monday has been mentioned as a deadline for a decision, with Honda refusing to take shutting the team down off the table.

This much is certain, Honda considers something preferable to an in-house buyout, maybe even shutting down the team. Not exactly a vote of confidence for Brawn, Fry and company.

There are rumors of activity around Brackley, so maybe a deal is imminent. But Branson doesn't sound like a man committed to anything, and Prodrive already backed out of a deal earlier this year when everyone thought it was just a matter of dotted i's and crossed t's.

I'm with Bernie. I'm not betting on this one either way, yet.

In other news:

Former Champ Car ace AJ Allmendinger says he is happy in NASCAR and is not interested in the possibility of a ride with USF1, autosport.com reports.

Newman/Haas/Lanigan Racing has announced Robert Doornbos will drive for the team in the 2009 IndyCar Series season. Doornbos, of course, drove for Minardi and Red Bull before moving to Champ Car in 2007. Don't miss the top stories of the day, subscribe to the SpeedRead Web newspaper now! -- Email SpeedRead -- Learn more about author C.D. Six


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