Giedo van der Garde’s victory in a Melbourne court today was an extraordinary outcome, and one that the Sauber team itself has admitted it didn’t expect. The fact is that the Australian legal system has backed up a judgement made in Switzerland last week and told Sauber that Van der Garde should race. How that impacts Marcus Ericsson and Felipe Nasr, and what happens over the next 48 hours remains, to be seen. This writer had an exclusive chat with the Dutchman on the steps of the courthouse.
Q: This applies to Australia, but what about the other 18 countries?
“I think this is something else that the lawyers have to speak about and solve it. I’m just looking forward to start this weekend. Like I said before I had a very good relationship with the team, and I still have. I think the team made a very good step during the winter. I’m glad about it, I’m looking forward to working together again, and to do well this weekend.”
Q: You say you have a good relationship but it’s going to be a very strange atmosphere. Everyone’s wondering how a team can work with a driver they were fighting in court?
“I don’t see any problems because in the end we had a good year last year, not only the results [of testing], on a personal side it was very good. I don’t see any problems with it. On the other hand now we have to stick together, put our heads in the same direction, and push very hard to get our first points.”
Q: A lot of people don’t realise that you only found out about Felipe Nasr after the press release came out in Brazil last year. How bad was that?
“Well, I think it’s not a good thing to speak about it now. I’m happy with this news and I’m looking forward to getting back behind the wheel again. It’s been a while, so let’s focus on that.”
Q: And all that stuff about the seat and so on – obviously that can be sorted quickly.
“I think you know and other people know that it can be sorted out quite quickly. In three or four hours you’re done with the seat, and you have a proper seat for the weekend.”
Q: The team’s argument was that it needed the drivers with the biggest sponsorship, and the future was under threat. That’s obviously the bigger story, isn’t it?
“Well that has been discussed already, and in the end this went off from the table. I’m happy to win this case now. Let’s focus on the weekend.”
Q: And it’s important that in a case like this a driver has actually won? We’ve seen similar case in the past…
“Oh yeah, I’m happy with that…”
16 responses to “Giedo van der Garde Q&A: “I’m looking forward to getting back behind the wheel…””
As a sometimes vindictive sore Loser I would have no problem parking his ass for the entire weekend. He may force himself down the teams throat but there is nothing that says they have to race him or the car. Is there?
A court order? Ignore that at your peril i would guess.
If the court impounds the cars, then they really will be up shit creek.
If you had a valid contract to drive in a season of F1 races, wouldn’t you fight pretty hard to keep the team to their (paper) promise?
Park him each and every weekend? Have a 1 car season? I doubt it 🙂
Good on him! The way Sauber acted was despicable. Yes, I know they were in dire straits financially, but a contract is a contract and the guy (or his father in law) paid a significant amount of money to keep the team afloat last year on the promise of a drive this year.
Would of loved this to have happened back in 2001 when Eddie fired Heinz over allegedly taking the piss out of Eddie’s rug..
They wouldn’t do that as it is one less race to score points (which could be a gain or loss in the millions) and I believe they have contracts with sponsors on there car racing, I can only see them not racing based on safety reasons. This is clearly Saubers’s fault, why would you sign four contracts for two cockpits. He is only forcing the team to honour their part of the contact that was signed.
That could lead to serious legal issues with the courts. Courts seem to take a dim view of people circumventing their decisions.
Monisha Kaltenborn should be sacked. This should have never happened. No doubt she relied on counsel, but that is no excuse. She needs to fall on her sword. End of story.
Um, she *is* counsel.
Agree w/ you. Peter Sauber, if he still has any modicum of control, should toss her out on her backside.
Sacking her may not be easy, as she is partial team owner. It’s sometimes incredible how complete incompetent people end up with too much power. Wishing Giedo all the best in dealing with this.
Hard to sack the owner
If they signed a contract with him that they failed to honour then it’s their problem
Monisha is not the owner…might have some stock, but Peter Sauber is still the majority shareholder…
She only owns 1/3. So she can most definitely, and should be, sacked.
Monisha Kaltenborn is a lawyer, you know what they say, if you represent yourself you have a fool for a client. LOL
“The team’s argument was that it needed the drivers with the biggest sponsorship, and the future was under threat”
That reminds me of the statements made here in the U.S. for why those huge companies needed bailouts. Sorry, you cannot run a business properly, you deserve to fail, no one should have to pay for your being bad in business.