Minardi Team USA has revealed that it will announce its driver line-up for the 2007 Champ Car World Series later today [Wednesday], but it remains unclear which two drivers will get the nod for the squad's first season.

Although Red Bull Racing's Robert Doornbos is a cert for one of the two seats on offer - team owner Paul Stoddart admitted as much on a flying visit to the Australian Grand Prix ten days ago - the only other driver to have sampled one of the former HVM team's cars is Hungarian Zsolt Baumgartner, whom Stoddart has signed only as a 'reserve'.

Stoddart and co-owner Keith Wiggins have been playing their cards very close to their chest throughout the three pre-season tests at Sebring, MSR Houston and Laguna Seca, with only Doornbos being given any meaningful track time, despite a host of names being linked to the second Panoz DP01.

Already understood to have fallen by the wayside are former F1 regular Jos Verstappen, who ducked out of he running at both Minardi and Forsythe after it became apparent that he would not get enough testing before the season began, and Katherine Legge, who appears likely to join Dale Coyne Racing after running with the team at all three test sessions.

Former HVM pilots Nelson Philippe and Dan Clarke have both been touted as potential members of Minardi's first Champ Car line-up, although the Briton has been conspicuous by his absence in testing, and has yet to sample the all-new Panoz chassis.

Philippe, meanwhile, ran with Minardi at Sebring, but was forced to link up with Conquest Racing at Houston after Stoddart apparently refused to put him in the car without some sort of commitment for the season. The Frenchman clearly rates highly with his potential employer, but it remains to be seen whether he is unveiled alongside Doornbos.

Among the potential wildcards floating around the Champ Car paddock, Oriol Servia would rank as a good acquisition for Stoddart, having proven his front-running ability at both Newman/Haas and PKV in recent seasons. Apparently out of a drive after Tristan Gommendy was inked by PKV, and RuSPORT opted for a partnership with Rocketsports instead of running two cars of its own, the Catalan is casting around for a seat having run at the top of the times in testing.



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