If the Caterham team’s attempts to revive its F1 race program for the Abu Dhabi finale via crowdfunding are successful, it will apparently be running without driver Marcus Ericsson. The Swede, who has signed with Sauber for 2015, announced via social media that he was severing ties with bankrupt Caterham organization effective immediately.
“Following recent events re Caterham Sports Limited and 1 MRT Sdn Bhd, my adviser Eje Elgh and I have decided to terminate, with immediate effect, all agreements connecting me to the Caterham F1 team,” Ericsson said. “This is a sad day as we have greatly enjoyed working with the team through a difficult and tough season.
“I wish to thank Colin Kolles, Manfredi Ravetto, Cyril Abiteboul and every other member of the Caterham F1 team for your trust and confidence in me, and for making my first Formula 1 season an educational and unforgettable experience. In addition, I thank my good friend and teammate Kamui Kobayashi for being an inspiring benchmark throughout the year, and hope to see him back on the track soon.”
Caterham’s administrators revealed ahead of the Brazilian GP that they would try to raise $3.72 million from fans via crowdfunding in an attempt to race in Abu Dhabi. Ericsson’s exit would appear to clear the way for the team to run another funded driver, theoretically reducing the crowdfunding requirement.
In Brazil, F1 chief executive Bernie Ecclestone was scornful of Caterham’s plan. “I think it’s a disaster,” he declared. “We don’t want begging bowls. If people can’t afford to be in Formula 1, they have to find something else to do.”