Jordan denies Irvine claim

Jordan denies Irvine claim

Eddie Jordan has denied that Eddie Irvine offered to drive for his team without being paid in order to win the fight for the remaining race seat. Irvine announced his retirement from F1 when the Jordan deal, which is the last race seat still ...

Eddie Jordan has denied that Eddie Irvine offered to drive for his team without being paid in order to win the fight for the remaining race seat. Irvine announced his retirement from F1 when the Jordan deal, which is the last race seat still available, fell through. He claimed that money was never the issue and that he had been willing to drive for free.

Eddie Jordan.
Photo by Brousseau Photo.
"I wanted to drive for them (Jordan) and prove a few things to a few people," Irvine said. "Jordan would not have had to have paid me a bean. I was prepared to look for personal sponsorship and to sell space on my overalls and a small part of the car. I could not have been fairer than that."

The ex-Jaguar driver added the one thing he was not willing to do was pay for his drive. Eddie Jordan, however, thinks his team were not as close to signing Irvine as the Irishman implied and that Irvine definitely wasn't offering his services free of charge.

"I don't think that we were close to signing Eddie at all," Jordan told The People newspaper. "And he was certainly not going to drive for free. We talked a bit to him about moving to us but he was always in Miami, and he knew that we were talking to a young up-and-coming driver. We have Giancarlo Fisichella, who is an expensive driver and we had to look at our budget commercially and build the car for the future and not just for now."

Irvine was also thought to have been willing to accept a drastic cut in his salary but Jordan claims his fellow Irishman was asking for too much: "He knew what we needed for him to drive, but we just couldn't meet his demands. To be truthful in the last couple of months I had put Eddie to one side and if it was going to happen then fine, but I was concentrating on other things."

"Eddie made it clear that his three-year contract with Jaguar was his final shot at it and that was his big-money pay deal. It would be hard for someone to come from that kind of situation and take a big pay cut, particularly if things started to go wrong. Also, Jordan don't want to become known as the graveyard employers."

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About this article
Series Formula 1
Drivers Eddie Irvine , Eddie Jordan
Teams Jordan