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Minardi signs with Cosworth

Minardi will use Cosworth engines next year, it was confirmed this morning by the Faenza-based team, ending long speculation and rumours about the squad’s future engine supply.

The team has inked a one-year agreement with the Ford-owned Northamptonshire-based engine giant with options for an extension. The signing means Team Principal Paul Stoddart has been able to arrange finance to pay for the leasing fees of the engines, which will be the 2002-spec CR3 as used by Jaguar-Racing in 2002. Jordan will use the same units but under a different agreement, the Silverstone operation operating the powerplants with the famous Ford RS-badging via a complicated commercial arrangement involving team sponsor DHL.

The signing also marks the reestablishment of strong links between Minardi and Cosworth. Minardi cars were powered by Ford Cosworth engines in some of the team's races in debut year 1985, and Cosworth-derived units have helped the team score 21 World Constructors’ points over a 12-year span.

‘We at Cosworth Racing are delighted to be working with Minardi again,’ said company Commercial Director, Bernard Ferguson.

‘We have enjoyed a strong relationship over the years, which has been built on mutual trust and respect. I am sure the team is set to go from strength to strength, and we are proud to be the engine of choice at this exciting time for Minardi. ‘

During the negotiation phase Minardi was forced to use old Cosworth-based European engines in testing last week but the agreement confirmation means the team will be able to use the new Cosworth engine when the squad returns to the track. The first 72-degree V10 will be delivered to Italy shortly which designers will integrate into the design of the PS03, the 2003 contender.

‘The KL Minardi team is extremely pleased to have concluded an agreement with Cosworth Racing, which sees the company become our official engine partner for 2003,’ Stoddart said proudly.

‘The decision renews valued links the team has built up with Ford and Cosworth Racing over the years, and will provide KL Minardi with what is clearly the most competitive power unit in its 19-year history in Formula One.

‘In combination with the latest chassis, I’m sure we will have a very strong package for next season.’

Minardi finished ninth in the Championship last season, using Asiatech V10 engines.

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