The Madrid-based HRT F1 team that Narain Karthikeyan has been racing for since his Formula 1 comeback last year has been put up for sale by its current owners Thesan Capital in an effort to find new investors.
It has been learned by HT that Jaypee Sports International (JPSI) managing director Sameer Gaur had expressed an interest in purchasing the team during last year's Abu Dhabi Grand Prix with the intention of fielding two Indian drivers. However, Gaur had to back out after JPSI's parent company, the Jaypee Group's priorities shifted.
The current president of India's motorsport governing body (FMSCI) Vicky Chandhok had been approached as a potential team principal. At the recently concluded Indian GP, Chandhok expressed confidence in the team advancing to the midfield of F1's pecking order with the right investments.
The Spanish investment company confirmed the potential sale in a statement that said it is "in talks with a number of groups interested in buying the team."
Motorsport website Autosport reported that the team came close to completing a sale to a Middle-Eastern buyer at the end of last month.
It has also been reported that HRT F1 has until December 2 to complete the sale or run the risk of being dissolved.
The team completed a shift from Germany to Madrid earlier in the year that resulted in some early-season difficulties in getting its HRT F112 ready for drivers to test and make the 107 percent cutoff time in qualifying.
HRT F1's current liabilities are believed to be in the region of $150 million, which any new buyer would have to take on should a sale go through.