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Aston Martin chief says F1 project ‘improbable’

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Aston Martin chief says F1 project 'improbable'
Aston Martin chief Andy Palmer has played down speculation the British carmaker is set to enter formula one.

CEO Andy Palmer was spotted on the grid of the British grand prix, in conversation with the likes of FIA president Jean Todt and Bernie Ecclestone.

It preceded rumours Aston Martin could come to the rescue for struggling Red Bull, re-branding customer Mercedes engines for the former champions from 2016.

But while admitting “talks” are taking place, Red Bull’s Dr Helmut Marko insisted: “(Remember) there is also a company called Red Bull Technologies.”

He is obviously referring to Adrian Newey’s desire to design a Red Bull road car, and suggestions the two sides are already working together.

And Palmer suggested it would not be a stretch for any publication to report about “talks” between Aston Martin and F1 teams.

“I think most of the teams in the pitlane at one moment or other since I’ve been here in the last nine months have approached me in some way, shape or form,” he said.

Indeed, it was with a Force India pass that Palmer actually entered the Silverstone paddock, it has emerged.

The meat of the Red Bull rumours, therefore, has been dismissed for now.

“We have a contractual relationship and a duty to (existing partner) Infiniti,” said team boss Christian Horner. “(We have) a great relationship with them actually.

“Any talk beyond that, as I have said, is just rumours,” he is quoted by Spain’s Marca.

Indeed, Palmer indicated Aston Martin cannot afford to simply launch into F1.

“We as a company don’t have the kind of money to go into formula one and make a decent job of it,” he said.

“The best I can tell you is that it’s improbable. I never say never but it’s improbable.” (GMM)

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