Of the new teams that applied to join Formula 1, only USF1 didn’t make the starting grid (Hispania, Virgin and Malaysia’s Lotus Racing are the three rookie outfits currently racing), and the FIA has invited applications to take the entry left vacant by the collapse of the American Dream, and will announce the result by July.
Italian former GP2 team Durango has thrown their name into the hat. Durango dropped out of GP2 at the end of last year due to financial problems, which makes one wonder how they are going to survive in F1. But Durango’s founder and team boss Ivone Pinton said the team’s new investors preferred the glitz, glamour and profile of F1 compared to its feeder series.
“After all the wrong things happened last season we tried our best to look for new partners in our racing activity. It did not take too long to understand that the interest could be aroused just about Formula 1 and nothing else. So we pushed towards this direction and I can say that, to enter F1, we can now enjoy the backing of two very big international groups,” he said.
Prior to running in GP2, Durango competed in Formula 3000. Among the drivers who have raced under its banner are Formula 1 new boys Karun Chandhok and Lucas di Grassi. Why won’t the FIA let the very well prepared and ready to race Stefan GP stand in for USF1 is anyone’s guess.