Out-of-work Super Aguri F1 refugee Takuma Sato has revealed that he is focussed upon securing a 2010 drive either in the top flight or else IndyCars – explaining his recent appearance in the grand prix paddock by insisting: “You can't afford to be forgotten.”
Sato has not raced since the collapse of the satellite Honda operation – for which he competed in 39 outings at the highest level from 2006 to 2008 – prior to the Turkish Grand Prix in May of last year. A subsequent series of tests last winter for Scuderia Toro Rosso ultimately and disappointingly came to nought when the Red Bull 'junior' concern elected to instead retain 2008 incumbent Sébastien Bourdais for a second consecutive campaign.
Having been absent from the paddock all year since then, Sato re-appeared at Suzuka over the weekend of the Japanese Grand Prix earlier this month – and with teams assessing their possibilities for next season, as well as the arrival of four newcomers in the 2010 field in the shape of USF1, Campos, Lotus and Manor, it has been widely surmised that the 32-year-old was job-hunting.
“I'm putting the same weight towards F1 and IRL,” the Japanese star told Reuters
. “I've found sometimes you can't control all things by yourself... You can't afford to be forgotten.”
Sato began 90 grands prix for Jordan Grand Prix, BAR-Honda and Super Aguri from 2002 to 2008, notching up 44 career points and registering a best finish of third place in the 2004 US Grand Prix at Indianapolis, behind only the all-dominant Ferrari pairing of Michael Schumacher and Rubens Barrichello.