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Latest F1 news in brief
  • Di Grassi admits 2009 debut possible
  • Eddie Jordan set for F1 return with BBC
  • Brazil GP not F1 farewell - Barrichello
  • Lewis has learned from 2007 defeat - Briatore
  • Canada GP needs new promoter - official
  • Modena court confirms Ferrari sabotaged

Di Grassi admits 2009 debut possible
(GMM)  Lucas di Grassi has admitted there is a "good possibility" he will step up to make his formula one race debut with Renault next year.

The 24-year-old Brazilian has been the team's test driver in 2008, while racing as a frontrunner in the support series GP2.

"There is a good possibility that I will be in F1 next year," he is quoted as saying in Sao Paulo by Reuters.

Di Grassi, who would replace Renault's current drivers Fernando Alonso or Nelson Piquet, said staying with the team is his "first option" but refused to rule out making his F1 debut elsewhere.

"The option is up to Renault.  They have the possibility of extending my contract, so I am waiting for their decision to see if it will be with Renault or if I will have permission to negotiate with other teams," he said.

Eddie Jordan set for F1 return with BBC
(GMM)  Eddie Jordan, the flamboyant former formula one team owner, is tipped to return to the sport in 2009.

The 60-year-old, who sold his Silverstone based team at the end of 2004, could assume a role when the BBC takes over as Britain's F1 television broadcaster next year.

When asked about the speculation by the Daily Express newspaper, Jordan declined to comment, but "insiders say he has been selected for his expertise both on and off the track".

A BBC spokesman said: "We have not confirmed our lineup yet."

It is also expected that Martin Brundle and retiring veteran David Coulthard will have roles in the BBC coverage from next year.

Brazil GP not F1 farewell - Barrichello
(GMM)  Rubens Barrichello insists he is not approaching next weekend's Brazilian grand prix as his farewell to the sport.

The Brazilian, who this year broke Riccardo Patrese's record to become the most experienced driver in F1 history, is yet to find out if he will be retained by Honda in 2009.

But even though the 2008 season finale will be staged in his beloved home city Sao Paulo, the 36-year-old says he will not take the opportunity to mark possibly his last of nearly 270 grand prix starts.

"I'm not seeing it as my last race," Barrichello said.  "It's just another Brazilian GP, one that is always fantastic because of the energy we get from the fans."

He refuses to be drawn on his chances of returning for a seventeenth consecutive formula one season next year, amid rumors of possible talks with Toro Rosso.

"I won't be making my farewell race just yet.  I don't have to think about that right now," Barrichello is quoted as saying by the Associated Press.

"I'll just try to have a good race, Interlagos will be packed with fans cheering for Felipe (Massa) and for me as well."

Lewis has learned from 2007 defeat - Briatore
(GMM)  Flavio Briatore has continued to back-paddle after recently slamming McLaren's Lewis Hamilton in an Italian newspaper interview.

The Renault boss reportedly asked an aide to pass on his apologies to Hamilton, 23, at the Chinese grand prix, after La Gazzetta dello Sport quoted him as predicting the over-hyped Briton will "throw away" the 2008 title.

But The Sun in Britain now quotes Briatore as saying of the championship leader: "Last year he lost 17 points in two races.  He has learned from last year.

"When you are fighting for the championship you need to look at the points, not only the victories.

"He has much more chance than anybody.  But if I am asked to gamble, then I will gamble on Massa because that will pay me more if I win."

Canada GP needs new promoter - official
(GMM)  Officials of the axed Canadian grand prix are searching for a new race promoter, following their London meeting on Thursday with Bernie Ecclestone.

Montreal mayor Gerald Tremblay said after the meeting with the F1 chief executive that it is "still possible" the event could be returned to the 2009 calendar.

According to the French language Canadian news agency La Presse Canadienne, Quebec minister Raymond Bachand - who was also present for the two-hour meeting - has now offered more details.

"We must find a promoter from the private sector who will take the event into their hands," he is quoted as saying at Montreal's Pierre Elliott Trudeau airport.

Rumors suggest that the savior could be in the form of Guy Laliberte, the founder of the Cirque du Soleil and an avid supporter of both F1 and the annual race at Circuit Gilles Villeneuve.

But Cirque spokeswoman Rene-Claude Menard said: "The only role that Guy is playing has been as a consultant, that's all.

"Right now, we're just keeping a close eye on any subsequent developments," she added.

Modena court confirms Ferrari sabotaged
(GMM)  A Modena court has confirmed that sabotage against Ferrari did take place prior to last year's Monaco grand prix.

The development is the latest in the protracted scandal of 2007, involving accused saboteur and spy Nigel Stepney.

British engineer Stepney, who was sacked by Ferrari, was named by the Modena magistrate as most likely to have instigated the sabotage, which involved placing white powder in the fuel tanks of the Monaco-bound F2007 cars.

The court report, referred to by the Spanish newspaper Diario Sport, said the powder put in the cars could have caused an engine failure.

Stepney's lawyer was quoted as saying the accusations are "vague and inexact".

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