Formula 1 supremo Bernie Ecclestone has expressed his doubts that the new Campos and USF1 teams will be ready to take their places on the grid when the 2010 season commences next March in Bahrain. According to a report in The Times, Ecclestone expects only 24 cars to line up on the grid.
This presents something of a mystery, since. according to the current roster, there are 13 teams and a total of 26 cars. If there were only 24 cars, as Ecclestone has suggested, that would imply that only one team out of the putative 13 would be missing. One possible answer is that a late entry would take the place of either Campos or USF1.
If so, Ecclestone is keeping that detail under wraps. What he has said on the matter is simply, “I think the people we expected to perform will and those that we thought wouldn’t, won’t.”
It’s also possible, of course, that Bernie has simply got his math wrong.
For his part, USF1 team principal Peter Windsor rejects the notion that his team will be a no show in Bahrain. As reported by ESPNF1, Windsor said, “I’m surprised Bernie said that. We will be there. We’re in good shape. Everything is going well and we are looking forward to the year. We’ve just finished the chassis and are now in the hands of Cosworth.”
While USF1 have yet to announce their drivers, they’ve paid their US $440,000 entrance fee for the year, which would indicate a certain level of commitment.
As far as the driver situation is concerned, Windsor added, “We are trying to find the best drivers we can; there’s no rush. We have no date. However, there will be a moment when we announce the drivers at the factory; and that will be some time towards late January.”