Following major interruption to this year’s Formula One season caused by the coronavirus pandemic, aspiring Panthera Team Asia Formula One remains hopeful of starting on the grid in the 2022 season. At the end of last summer, the Formula One hopefuls announced their plans for making a bid to participate in this year’s now largely cancelled championships. At the time, F1 managing director shot down any hopes the aspiring participants harboured. Ross Brawn spoke extensively of a “surprising” amount of interest from new teams but summarily dismissed the hopefuls. With a plethora of changes to the technical, sporting and commercial aspects in the 2021 season, the F1 boss preferred that the situation “stabilise” before, prior to admitting new entrants.
Panthera Team Asia Boss Benjamin Durand
Boss of Panthera Team Asia Benjamin Durand spoke to a popular motorsport website about the situation. “It has been quite a rollercoaster, but we are still alive — the project is not done. We were already aiming for 2022 before the current crisis hit and we are still looking for a way in. We have had a group of people working on the car, doing some preliminary work on the aero side, and continue to work with investors.” He added, “We are waiting to see what happens with F1 before we say more. People are talking about the possibility of being able to buy a car [from another team], so we will have to wait and see what happens.” Backed by investors from Asia, the F1 hopefuls operate from a base in the UK.
In other F1 news, staggering losses faced by the Formula 1 Group have been reported for the first quarter of the year. Income from January to March for this year stands at a total of $39 million, whereas a total of $246 million was reported for 2019.