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Stefanovic waits on FIA decision

NEWS STORY
24/02/2010

Stefan GP boss Zoran Stefanovic remains confident that his team will be on the grid this season, claiming that he hopes to get the nod from the sport's governing body within the next week.

Despite the news that Campos Meta's bid has been saved, there is continued doubt as to the worthiness of US F1's ambitions. With the support of Bernie Ecclestone, Stefanovic is now waiting on the OK from the FIA which will kick start the Serbian outfit's entry.

"Definitely, we are waiting for something to happen," he told Reuters, "because the time is very short and the deadline for Bahrain is approaching. If you are going to Bahrain you have to be packed by next Wednesday and we think we will be able to reach something by then."

When asked if the team could join the grid later in the season, should the FIA put its bid on hold, Stefanovic said: "Technically it's possible but we are going to be in Bahrain. We are not saying it's for sure, but we are looking forward to it."

Of course, should the team get the green light for Bahrain - a move which would require the approval not only of the FIA but all the existing teams, hardly likely considering Ferrari's comments earlier this week - there is the matter of safety, with the Stefan GP contender not yet having turned a wheel in anger, a situation not helped by the fact that the team doesn't have tyres.

"We have been unable to get the Formula One tyres because the FIA and Formula One have a contract stipulating that only the teams that are already in Formula One can get the Bridgestone tyres," admitted Stefanovic. "We believe the FIA has to release the proper tyres to us for safety reasons. We expect it to happen and we have very good faith that it is going to happen.

"I've been involved in engineering in the last five years and I've been interested in Formula One for a long time," he added. "I think Bernie supports everyone and I think he supports us because we are pushing for it. We are working, not talking.

"The impact will be huge and a lot of people in Serbia don't realise that yet. The positive image of Serbia being a part of Formula One is something any country would wish for, so it's a plus one way or another. Also, it's a huge opportunity to get into high-tech business."

It's understood that Kazuki Nakajima has already signed a deal with the team which is still in talks with 1997 world champion Jacques Villeneuve, though the Canadian is playing down the speculation.

"It's not happened yet but everything except his signature had been done," said Stefanovic. "Probably in the next two or three days, we will be reaching some sort of an agreement."

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