Honda to withdraw from F1 by March 2009


While it has yet to be officially confirmed, our sources at Brackley have informed us that at tonight's emergency meeting, the Honda F1 team's workforce was advised that the Japanese manufacturer is withdrawing from F1.

The Japanese car giant has said that it will withdraw from F1 in March 2009, and if no buyers have been lined up by that time the entire operation will be closed down.

There will be no forced redundancies at Brackley, however, the team is looking for voluntary redundancies, with many workers spending much of this afternoon contacting rival teams looking for work.

Members of Honda's HGT division currently working in England will return to Japan with immediate effect.

Honda claims to have two prospective buyers, however, there is a further complication with the news that Honda's withdrawal is total, it will not continue as an engine manufacturer.

If there is a potential buyer out there, and it is hard to see given the current financial climate, the most likely scenario is that Team Principal Ross Brawn might seek an engine deal with his former employer, Ferrari.

This is a sad end to a legendary name, and it is particularly hard on the Brackley workforce.

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Published: 04/12/2008
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