Manfredi Ravetto has revealed Caterham has begun 'testing' its 2015 car in Toyota's wind tunnel in Cologne and has insisted the outfit is “fully committed” to being in Formula 1 in 2015.
Despite the takeover back in July by a consortium of Swiss and Middle Eastern investors - advised by former F1 team principal Colin Kolles – the future of the Caterham F1 Team remains uncertain. Indeed F1 boss Bernie Ecclestone
recently said there was a real possibility that there could be eight three-car teams in F1 next season, with three then likely to disappear.
Despite that though, Ravetto is adamant plans are afoot for next year: “We are currently testing our 2015 car in Cologne, at Toyota's wind tunnel,” he told the official F1 website. “Obviously you cannot run your car in Cologne just because of our extremely nice attitude! You only can do this with an injection of cash - which we did. And if we do this it means that we are fully committed to being here next year.
“Let me explain some of the reasoning: a F1 team and a Formula 1 entry are huge assets, and therefore you have to do your maximum to protect these assets.”
He also revealed that Caterham is keen to retain Marcus Ericsson for 2015, although Kamui Kobayashi's position is less concrete. His drive has been up for auction in recent months.
“We have something in mind [for 2015] - and of course we are planning on a mix [of drivers]: an experienced driver and a 'hot shoe'. We don't want to lose Marcus because the team invested in him in his rookie time and now wants to harvest on this investment, as we think that he will be able to deliver.
“Regarding Kamui, he knows that he has open doors at Caterham. Obviously he knows that he also has to deliver this year. He has to help us to achieve the P10 [in the Constructors'] that we are targeting.”
Quizzed on the team's immediate plans, he added: “We are towards the end of the season with only flyaway races left where big changes are almost impossible, so we are working mainly in the office to work on the commercial side. We have the technical department that is focusing on 2015, and the race team takes it on a race-by-race basis. After Abu Dhabi we will exhale a bit and then start to get to know everybody better, which is very difficult when you come in at mid-season.”