‘B’ teams must wait for 2008 cars

Thu, 4 October 2007, 03:34

At least two formula one teams look likely to start the 2008 season with ‘old’ cars.

It has emerged that both Super Aguri and Toro Rosso, viewed by some in pitlane as ‘B’ teams for Honda and Red Bull respectively, will probably still be using their current chassis at least for the early races of next year.

Reports have indicated that the reason for the delays, in both cases, is logistical — with the parent outfits simply unable to prepare enough versions of their new 2008-spec models, plus spare parts, to equip a second team.

A more likely explanation, however, is the continuing uncertainty over the legality of ‘customer cars’ for 2008, with McLaren-Mercedes ‘B’ team Prodrive also yet to move ahead with its plans for its debut season.

Honda boss Nick Fry confirmed that Super Aguri would like to use an identical works 2008 car next year, but insists that the plans have only been delayed due to logistics.

“If the rules allow it, the objective would be for Super Aguri to have the same car as us next year, but that probably wouldn’t be from round one — purely because the logistics just don’t work,” he is quoted as saying by Speed TV.

“Even though we have substantial manufacturing capability, to turn out two teams’ worth of cars in time for round one just would not be possible,” Fry added.

The ‘customer car’ regulation hold-up may, however, be pushed along now that a date has been set for Spyker’s arbitration case against the two ‘B’ teams.

It has emerged that the first hearing in the Swiss based Court of Arbitration for Sport will take place on October 9 (next Tuesday) in Lausanne.

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