Midland to buy Jordan, maybe

UPDATE #3 Eddie Jordan spent the weekend in the Alps and was not easily contactable but our sources tell us that the Irishman is denying that a deal has been done with the Russian businessman Alex Schnaider to sell the Jordan F1 team to the new Midland F1 organization. This does not mean that a deal will not be done at some point in the future but at the moment the team remains under Jordan's control and there are signs that it could remain that way. The rumors of the Midland purchase appear to have been sparked by the appearance at the Autosport Show in Birmingham of Midland's new technical director Gary Anderson and started on the Autosport.com website. After that they grew at a rate of knots and with Jordan unavailable for comment have got a little out of control. Grandprix.com 01/15/05 Eddie Jordan has agreed to sell his Formula 1 team to Russian entrepreneur Alex Shnaider, Autosport.com revealed today, with an announcement confirming the news due to be made next Sunday. The deal will bring an end to Jordan's 14-year tenure as F1's most charismatic team boss. Autosport reports that Shnaider will take over the outfit as its new team principal, with Jordan being moved into a role as commercial director. Other staff changes are also taking place, one of which could be that Midland F1's advisor Trevor Carlin takes over as team manager.

Speaking to Autosport, Jordan confirmed that changes were afoot. “No deal has yet been finalized," he said. “But my role will change." "We are going forward strongly and it is business as usual," Jordan told The Guardian. "The 2005 program with us switching to Toyota engines is going ahead and we are not changing any people on the payroll. But my role may change to concentrate more on the commercial side to work on future investment in the team. We could obviously be stronger and I would be happy to bring aboard new partners even if it meant diluting my own equity stake in the company, if it meant we could get back to the situation where there was a possibility of winning races."

01/06/05 According to Grandprix.com, the Jordan team is now off the market. The word on the street at Silverstone is that Jordan Grand Prix is not for sale after the failure of negotiations between Eddie Jordan and Christian Horner of the Arden International Formula 3000 team. There has been vague talk of deals with Midland F1 and with a mysterious Chinese backer but the latest suggestion is that Jordan is going to go it alone and wait until the value of the F1 teams increase. Both Bernie Ecclestone and the GPWC are promising big payments for Formula 1 teams which join them. The value of the teams is uncertain because of the uncertainties which hang over the sport. 12/15/04 Alex Shnaider has emerged as a candidate to buy Jordan Grand Prix, Autosport has learned. The backer of the Midland-Dallara Formula 1 project, which is due to enter the 2006 World Championship, has made early enquiries as to Jordan’s position amid speculation that he might prefer to buy out an existing team rather than continue with his plan to build one from scratch. Buying Jordan would guarantee Shnaider an entry into the 2005 championship and he would avoid paying the $48 million (£25m) deposit required as a new entrant.

Shnaider’s office would not comment on his position in relation to Jordan, but sources confirm he visited the Silverstone factory last week with a handful of close aides. The future ownership of Jordan remains unresolved. Christian Horner, boss of Formula 3000 champion team Arden International, is still in talks with Eddie Jordan, but the two sides appear unable to agree financial terms. A third potential buyer is also understood to be holding talks. Jordan, who owns 51 per cent of the team, with the remaining 49 per cent held by the Irish Merrion consortium, is believed to be unwilling to sell for less than £30m. Autosport Magazine

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