Absent from the group tests held so far this winter, former FIA F3000 champion Super Nova has confirmed that it is unlikely to attend any official pre-season test until Silverstone next month.

With one driver - Frenchman Olivier Pla - signed up, and rumoured partner Giorgio Pantano now on his way to Jordan in Formula One, the team has revealed that it plans to undertake a private testing programme in Europe over the next few weeks in preparation for the opening race of the year, at Imola, in April.

"We would rather wait and announce our drivers and sponsors when we are ready, and undertake private testing before the second official test takes place at Silverstone on 23-24 March," team principal David Sears commented, "That will be the first test on a circuit that we actually race on."

Sears went on to reveal that he was in talks with potential team-mates for Pla, but that nothing had been confirmed as yet.

"We are still in final negotiations, but our driver line-up for this year may end up coming as a big surprise to everybody," he said.

Internet rumours link former championship contender Tomas Enge with the second Super Nova seat, as the Czech driver is reported to be joining the team for a test at Snetterton this week. Enge, who was denied a shot at the 2002 title after proving positive in a drugs test, ran with newcomers Ma-Con Engineering last week.

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