Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Have you seen ANT?

And while we’re all holding our breath, (Well Ok, at least one curmudgeon at SPEED who claims he may be the last person to care about Open Wheel Racing!) has anybody seen “ANT”? Err, you know, Anthony Davidson, the cheeky Brit who drives for Super Best Friends.

It seems that his team, Super Aguri F1 has been doing their best impersonation of the Tony ‘N Kevin show… As apparently Aguri Suzuki has been struggling to find sufficient funding to run his “B Team” Honda squad for the upcoming season, thus the team has been largely MIA from this year’s “Winter Olympics,” having made only a few token appearances to date.

Although the team showed up for an early season test with test driver James Rossiter and Anthony Davidson on hand, Rossiter was only able to run 10 laps as the team’s website claims that replacement parts were unable to be obtained in time upon a company plane being forced to cut its flight short due to problems.

The team did show up for the last test at Jerez with an SA07B mule chassis for Taku-sun (Takuma Sato) and ANT to share and upon the teams 2008 SA08 chassis passing the mandatory FIA certification, the team had planned to launch the new car this week at Barcelona.

But then, borrowing a page from the Champ Car press corps, Super Aguri made the following announcement after cancelling the planned car launch; Super Aguri will host a Q&A session with team boss Aguri Suzuki and technical director Mark Preston on Tuesday.

But this has since been curtailed as the team has now made the following statement. “The Super Aguri F1 team will not be participating at the test in Barcelona this week due to circumstances beyond our control,”
“We would like to apologize to our colleagues in the media who had made arrangements to attend our Q&A tomorrow."
The uncertainty over the team's future has ensured that neither Takuma Sato or Anthony Davidson have yet had their contracts to drive in 2008 renewed, although the team has continued to insist it intends to retain both drivers. Yet, we are planning to attend the test at the Circuit de Cataluna next week with two cars.
Hopefully both Taku & ANT can finally get down to the business of racing and propel Super Best Friends up the grid. C’mon Honda, throw Aguri-sun a bone! And hey, since you’re doling out free engines and last years Factory chariot, the RA107 was a DAWG, perhaps the team could use some of those left over Panoz’s, eh?