USF1 has dismissed speculation that it will not be ready for the beginning of the F1 2010 campaign in Sakhir in just over two months' time and that it has petitioned the sport's governing body to be able to miss the opening four races and instead come in for the start of the European season in Spain.
All sorts of rumours have been flying round about USF1 for months, with many sceptical about just how co-founders Peter Windsor and Ken Anderson will make the venture work, given that it has its headquarters the other side of the Atlantic in the heart of NASCAR country in Charlotte, North Carolina – and traditionally, the majority of F1 success stories have been based in Europe.
There is also the fact that it is the only entry in the field to have no drivers yet signed for 2010 – with the mantra having changed from an initial desire to run two homegrown talents to a brace of experienced hands to now just about anyone the team can get, with Windsor having all-but admitted in a recent interview that an all-rookie, all pay-driving line-up is likely for the outfit's maiden campaign at the highest level [see separate story – click here
Moreover, there have been precious few signs of progress on the design front, and the series of comedy sketches published right here on Crash.net
] have to an exaggerated degree tended to sum up what the paddock view is of the most precarious of the F1 2010 newcomers.
Now, authoritative Italian newspaper La Gazzetta Sportiva
is reporting that USF1 has applied to the FIA for special dispensation to skip the early flyaway races in Bahrain, Australia, Malaysia and China and belatedly join the fray for the Spanish Grand Prix in Barcelona in early May.
Windsor, however, insisted in an interview with the official F1 website that 'I can't say any more than that we will definitely be on the Bahrain grid', and team sources have since reinforced that conviction.
To further add weight to Windsor's argument, USF1 has recruited respected ALMS and IndyCar figure John Anderson as team manager [see separate story – click here
], whilst the nose section of its Cosworth-powered challenger is said to have 'performed well' when subjected to crash tests in the UK last week.