Mansell to replace Speed in 2008
Saturday, April 1st 2007, 13:37 GMT
After much speculation as to the identity of Scuderia Toro Rosso’s lineup for the coming year, Gerhard Berger has announced that at least one of the seats will be taken by 1992 World Champion Nigel Mansell. In what has come as a shock decision, the former ATS driver said that it was the most logical way to bring the struggling outfit further up the grid.
“It was a hard decision, we knew that after our recent performances what we lacked compared to Red Bull Racing was experience. We believe that by hiring Nigel, we’ll easily have the oldest combined driver pairing since the early fifties” Berger told F1rejects.com shortly after the announcement.
“I’ve worked with Nigel before when we were teammates, so I’m aware of what can be expected in the coming year. He should be able to start testing as soon as possible, he may even be able to turn a wheel in anger by the time we reach the final part of the season”.
Scott Speed has been surprisingly calm regarding the decision, even though he only was informed by the team during a last-minute meeting with Franz Tost, Berger and current team-mate Vitantonio Liuzzi.
“All they did was tell me and Tonio to take a step forward if we had a seat for 2008, as I started moving Berger stopped me and told me ‘not so fast Scott’, I thought maybe my shoes had their laces untied but I realized soon it wasn’t” the driver lamented to Enoch Law, the Senior Grand Prix analyst at F1 rejects.com.
What is left following the announcement is who will be partnering Mansell for the following season, and indeed whether rumors surrounding the team’s sale are more than just speculation. Insiders have claimed that an Indian gentleman by the name of Ramih Cales-Chechum has expressed interest in purchasing part of the team formerly known as Minardi. Berger was dismissive of the specific claim, stating that “I’d sooner let Michael Schumacher buy an interest in the team”.
questo s? che ? uno scherzo