A bid by a group of American investors to break into Formula 1 moved up a gear in Canada last weekend when representatives met with teams and Bernie Ecclestone to advance their talks.
The plan is being led by Parris Mullins (left), the advisor to YouTube co-founder Chad Hurley during his involvement with the ill-fated US F1 team. Mullins traveled to Montreal last weekend to continue discussions with teams about possible options for the future, which he has made clear will be with a current team rather than as a start-up operation.
Speculation has already linked him with both Sauber and Scuderia Toro Rosso, because of his good personal links with Ferrari, but Mullins insists he is totally open minded about how he gets involved.
Speaking to AUTOSPORT about how his visit to Montreal had gone, Mullins said: "Over the course of these three days progress has been huge. There was only so much I could do from the U.S. anyway, and all the right people are here congregated into one area. I made a lot more progress this weekend than what I was expecting, I hope to be making just as much progress between now and Valencia so we will see. The project is moving ahead.
"More options have come up. As I have mentioned before I had several different ideas for not just myself to enter the sport, but also for the group of people that I am representing. So more possibilities have popped up. It has been a very productive weekend."
Mullins confirmed he met with Ecclestone over the weekend to discuss his future F1 plans, and said he had got some positive feedback.
"Like I have said before, if the project makes sense, Bernie is willing to help," he said. "If it makes sense, then he will get behind it. I am taking it one step at a time, going at his pace and following his advice."
Ferrari president Luca di Montezemolo said a few weeks ago that the dream for his team was to link up with an American group to run a third car.