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Chandhok out of money?

india Updated: Jun 12, 2010 23:39 IST
Sukhwant Basra

India’s Karun Chandhok may not have an F1 drive for too long if the buzz on the motorsports grapevine is to be believed.

The latest bit from the speculation-rife world of speed suggests that the Indian’s funds are drying up from lack of sponsor support. It has been reliably learnt that HRT team principal Colin Kolles has been making enquiries to find a driver that can bring in the sponsorship required to keep the team going.

Among the drivers that HRT is said to have contacted is also India’s Narain Karthikeyan who, however, is tied down with NASCAR this season and is not free to drive in F1.

Anyhow, Karthikeyan has been adamant all along that he will not take to the track in a back-of-the-grid team again. HRT feelers, motorsports sources reveal, have also gone out to Sakon Yamamoto, Pastor Maldonaldo and Christijan Albers.

Chandhok has been quoted by the website autosport.com saying that he would love to drive for Vijay Mallya’s Force India. He has also alluded to the absence of Indian corporate support by suggesting that companies are not sure as to whether to back the Indian driver or the so-called Indian team. The truth of that is open to debate but there does seem to be a bit of desperation creeping in. The Chandhok camp insists that there is no cause for worry and that a big public sector company is about to come on board as a sponsor. The driver is said to have a contract to bring onboard sponsorship in the vicinity of seven and a half million euros (approx Rs. 43 crore) in lieu of his drive.