Team admits rules doubt ‘harming’ Prodrive

Wed, 10 October 2007, 01:51

Continuing uncertainty about the legality of customer cars in 2008 and beyond may have resulted in the breakdown of talks between Prodrive and McLaren.

The two outfits had been strongly tipped to link up to share cars and engines when Prodrive enters the sport next year.

McLaren chairman Ron Dennis revealed mere days ago that “a detailed commercial agreement” is ready to go as soon as there is clarity about the legality of the customer car rules for 2008.

A potentially devastating spanner in the works, however, was the news last Friday that FIA president Max Mosley had referred the question of Prodrive’s arguably legal plans to the Court of Appeal.

The court’s decision will be publicised on October 25 — just ten weeks before the start of the 2008 season in Melbourne.

David Richards-led Prodrive reacted to the news, which was sparked by a letter of protest by Williams, with a strongly worded statement.

“Uncertainty spread by others, for their own interests, is not only harming the development of our F1 programme, but is putting in jeopardy those of other teams already committed to a customer car programme next year,” it read.

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