While the world is dancing on the grave of HRT, we hear a different refrain and are reticent to begin the dance macabre just yet. We’re not suggesting that the disappearing act of HRT from the 2013 grid isn’t a reality but what we are hearing is that the team, it’s assets and entry to the 2013 season may not be quite dead…recall your favorite Monty Python sketch.
You’ll recall that AUTOSPORT ran a story that a group of American and Canadian investors called Scorpion were interested in acquiring the assets of HRT and fielding a car for 2013. That notion was quickly dismissed in the rank and file of Formula One journalism and with good reason. These folks are professionals and at the touch-point of the players involved. It didn’t help that the FIA said they were content with the entry list they released back in November (which didn’t include HRT) and even F1 boss Bernie Ecclestone himself played down the thought of a quick turn around.
That’s one side of the story. What we do know, from our sources, is that the group have not given up yet and that things have taken a more positive turn in the last few days. Suffice to say, out of respect for our sources, we undersand that this is not a forgone conclusion as to whether or not the team could surprise and be on the grid in Australia. They are serious about their attempt and perhaps the details are over the acquisition process and FIA entry but we speculate.
Suffice to say, what would a team of American and Canadian investors look like? A team of people who have a penchant for sports car racing and the resources to acquire the assets of HRT? What challenges would this team face with a 3-year-old Dallara chassis and the development need to remain in the same postal code as the rest of the teams in 2013? Having the resources to acquire the assets is one thing but what about running the team?
We’ve discussed it internally here at F1B but we’d like to know what you think. I’ve said several times that there is one person who has a history of taking pieces and parts and making it to the grid in Australia under the gun and that’s Colin Colles. He’s a proven leader at assembling a team and parts and making it happen. It would be terrific to have a team, based in the UK, with American and Canadian ownership. A real chance for a possible North American driver to get to F1.
The HRT was several seconds of the pace and one presumes that if Scorpion can get the deal done and the FIA allow their entry, they will face several challenges. There is little doubt the drivers would need to be paying drivers such as Kamui Kobayashi or Bruno Senna but it will be intriguing to see if they can pull it off. Every second counts at this stage but I can tell you, they are working full tilt to get this done with meetings and discussions with names you know well in F1 circles. We’ll keep you posted.