Wirdheim and Red Bull part company

Bj?rn Wirdheim and Red Bull Racing have parted company after the team made it known that it would not require his services for next season. Wirdheim, last year's F3000 champion, was third driver for Jaguar in 2004 and was due to test for Red Bull this week at Barcelona. However, it now appears that he won't be on track.

Bjorn Wirdheim.
Photo by Jaguar Cars and Wieck Media Services, Inc..

Red Bull Racing team Managing Director Dave Pitchforth said in a statement: "I would like to thank Bjorn for all of his help and support for the team over the last year, and wish him the best of luck in the future."

Christian Klien and Vitantonio Liuzzi -- this year's F3000 champion -- remain the favourites for the Red Bull race seats and both are on duty at the Circuit de Catalunya this week. Klien has already been made an offer to race for the team in 2005.

"We have backed Christian since he was 14 or 15 years old and we do not wish to lead someone into Formula One only to drop him after a premature verdict," said Red Bull boss Dietrich Mateschitz, according to Autosport.

While the team is keen on Liuzzi, the Italian's lack of F1 experience goes against him. "The question remains if one should give him a cockpit straight away," Mateschitz commented. "It would be helpful to the team to have a driver capable of developing a car. It would not be ideal to go racing with two rookies."

Mateschitz is also interested in Nick Heidfeld, who will test for Williams in December. One experienced driver still out there looking for a seat is David Coulthard but Mateschitz has already said that Red Bull is not considering the Scot.