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Toyota wants to keep Red Bull UPDATE #2 Red Bull Racing, which the Austrian-based energy-drink company has put up for sale, has filed a notice of possible layoffs of 152 employees under the North Carolina Worker Adjustment and Retraining Notification Act.  Red Bull Racing notified the state Tuesday that 152 employees could lose their jobs from a permanent closure of the team. The effective date listed is Dec. 17, 2011.

The notification with the state does not mean the team will or will not be sold but covers Red Bull if it does not sell the team and shuts it down or sells the team to a buyer that lays off workers.

North Carolina law requires the 60-day notice to the state and employees if at least 50 employees will be laid off because of the closure or shutdown of a business unit or if a company has layoffs of at least 50 people that impact 33 percent of a workforce at a single site.

Red Bull General Manager Jay Frye has been seeking to find investors for the team since the announcement in June that Red Bull wanted to get out of the sport and sell the team. Red Bull opened the team in 2007 and currently fields cars for Brian Vickers and Kasey Kahne.

A team spokesman said the team had no comment on the WARN filing. If an employer does not notify the state and its employees of layoffs, it could be responsible for 60 days of wages plus a $500 fine for each violation.

"It’s a difficult situation for everyone – myself included, everyone in the shop, the road guys," said Red Bull Racing driver Brian Vickers when asked about how his team is handling the uncertainty. "I’m just really proud that everyone is coming to the track every week and doing their job. Really, that’s all you can do. The most important thing that we as a team as a group of individuals have is to perform. If we all go do our job and we all perform, then next year is going to take care of itself." Scendaily.com

09/23/11 In June it was reported that Red Bull will put the brakes on its involvement with NASCAR at the end of this year but this seems to be premature. [Red Bull owner Dietrich] Mateschitz says "this is not yet a final decision but we had many reasons to re-analyze our involvement with the goal of either to confirm our participation in NASCAR or to question it." He adds that the key factors which will affect Red Bull's decision are target groups, marketing, media values, the engine, the fact that NASCAR is a purely American series and of course success and the cost to benefit ratio. PitPass

06/23/11 Red Bull Racing was one of Toyota's foundation teams when the Japanese manufacturer moved into Sprint Cup racing in the 2007 season. With this week's news that Red Bull is leaving behind its NASCAR connection, Toyota could lose one of its teams. But Toyota Racing Development chief Lee White said Wednesday that he is interested in working with team general manager Jay Frye as Frye seeks investors and sponsors to keep the team afloat. "I have a huge respect for Jay Frye," White said. "He's a great guy and has a lot of experience in the sport. He's well-connected. I'm very interested to see what he ends up with as far as investors and partners, and certainly we'll have time for him moving forward if he wants to continue the relationship, and we'll also have a lot of time for him even if that doesn't happen and it involves someone else." SPEED
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