After few weeks of Prodrive radio silence, some new information emerged last weekend in Spa. As Autosport reports, the deal is on hold, until the new Concorde Agreement is finalized.
From what David Richards says, it seems that all is in place:
“We are there, but there are lots of issues surrounding the validity of the Concorde Agreement, it is those sort of things that leave question marks at the moment, and they need to be resolved. Every other aspect of it is cleared up.”
It is widely expected that Prodrive will run McLaren chassis next year. This deal will come handy for McLaren, they sure would not mind extra cash to fill at least a bit of the $100,000,000 big hole. But….
For the whole deal to be possible there has to be new Concorde Agreement. The current one does not allow customer chassis… There are rumours that Max Mosley offered last weekend the teams an option to continue using current Concorde Agreement for another year and allow more time for coming up with new agreement. This may be acceptable last resort solution for all the current teams, but it may not allow Prodrive to use customer chassis in 2008. As they have no plans to build their own car, this would be a big blow.
The main issue as always is money and to it is closely tied up also a definition of constructor. Money is never easy. But on top of it, the definition of constructor may take long time to come up with. Already this year there are doubts whether Toro Rosso and Super Aguri are in fact constructors, or just B-teams running customer chassis. The teams are financially rewarded for their results in Constructors Championship. More constructors, more people to share the same pie… This may take several months to finalize, and even if all is settled on time before the start of next season, it may be too late for Prodrive to make it to 2008 grid.
Now, even if new Concorde Agreement will be in place before the new season starts, there may still be an issue with car Prodrive plans to run. If indeed they make a deal with McLaren, the FIA scrutiny of McLaren’s car may apply to Prodrive as well.
Whatever happens, let’s hope, that all is clear and settled before the 2008 season begins…