F3 squad Litespeed to lodge F1 entry
Formula 3 team Litespeed has announced its intention to apply for an entry to the 2010 Formula 1 World Championship under the new budget cap rules.
The team has joined forces with MGI Ltd, whose managing director is former F1 technical director Mike Gascoyne, and is hoping to be one of the 13 teams chosen for the new championship.
Team boss Nino Judge admitted he is not even sure the current budget cap rules will stay on, but he reckons it is the best moment to enter Formula 1.
"We don't yet know whether the cap team rules will be changed, and obviously we don't know if our application will be accepted," said Judge.
"The cap may be dropped altogether. The point is that there is not much time for the project to get on to the 2010 grid and we have to take some risks in order to maximize time for preparation.
"Potentially, there will never be a better time to enter the F1 arena. "The FIA has so far not only been bold in introducing the budget cap, but has evidently thought out the long-term prospects of this globally captivating sport.
"There is space and a need in the arena for independent teams and the technical leeway given to the budget-capped teams allows for a competitive performance within the financial parameters."
Applications for the 2010 championship close on May 29, and the FIA will announce the successful applicants on June 12.
Judge said his team would have a schemed F1 chassis by mid-June.
"In times of crisis, we hope that fortune will favor the brave," added Judge. "Despite the potential backlash – which has become a reality – the FIA was not afraid to introduce pioneering measures to ensure the future of F1.
"We are confident that the FIA / FOTA will find a swift compromise, which is good for F1 and that allows new teams, like ours, to enter. As an innovative, cost-efficient and engineering based organization, the budget cap initiatives fit with the very ethos of Litespeed GP, which is why now is the right time for us to make this announcement."
Litespeed joined the British F3 field in the middle of the 2008 season, having bought the rights to the SLC chassis used in the Euro Series in 2005. The team has worked to develop the unique design in the National class, with limited success so far, but also recently announced that it would run Jay Bridger's Championship class Mygale for the rest of 2009.