Owners desperate to sell HRT for $50-million as crisis engulfs team
14 November, 2012
Nov.14 (GMM) Thesan Capital, the current owners of HRT, are seeking $50-million for the struggling backmarker team, according to the Spanish sports daily AS, but the newspaper also revealed that talks with potential buyers from India and Abu Dhabi are underway.
Media reports suggested that HRT was in the process of dismissing 32 employees, and needed a buyer before the first days of December to avoid closure.
AS claims that the situation inside the team has become dire, to the point that engineers are concerned that Pedro de la Rosa and Narain Karthikeyan are being put into grands prix in unsafe HRT cars.
Indeed, at the most recent grands prix in Abu Dhabi and India, both Karthikeyan and de la Rosa retired in spectacular style with fundamental technical failures.
De la Rosa crashed due to brake failure, while Mercedes’ Nico Rosberg was sent airborne when Karthikeyan slowed because his steering wheel “locked solid”.
AS suggests that HRT has considered simply withdrawing from the 2012 championship, but is pushing ahead for now due to its commitment to the Concorde Agreement.
According to the report, HRT was hoping its association with Chinese reserve driver Ma Qing Hua would bear commercial fruit.
Chief executive Saul Ruiz de Marcos reportedly wrote a letter to China’s motor racing federation, saying that Hua would make his F1 debut in 2013 if he could bring EUR 30 million in backing.
Subbed by AJN.