Irvine sets the record straight

Irvine sets the record straight

Jaguar's Eddie Irvine has set the record straight in view of the recent rumours about his future. At the latest Silverstone testing session, Jaguar had young Spanish star Fernando Alonso driving alongside regular testers James Courtney and Andre...

Jaguar's Eddie Irvine has set the record straight in view of the recent rumours about his future. At the latest Silverstone testing session, Jaguar had young Spanish star Fernando Alonso driving alongside regular testers James Courtney and Andre Lotterer. Although the team said it was only to see how their test drivers measured up to Alonso, the situation sparked a storm of speculation that Irvine was on his way out.

Eddie Irvine.
Photo by Brousseau Photo.
This weekend further rumours surfaced that Irvine was heading to Jordan next season, the team he started his Formula One career with. "There's been a lot of speculation surrounding my Formula One future after Jaguar Racing announced they were giving Fernando Alonso a test drive," Irvine wrote in his UK newspaper column. "The Spaniard is contracted to Renault so when his name cropped up people immediately suggested he could be replacing me next season."

"My name has also been linked with a return to Jordan but so far no one has approached me and I wouldn't discuss the matter even if they had. The truth is that Jaguar Racing wanted to use Alonso as a yardstick to see how our regular two test drivers - James Courtney and Andre Lotterer - measured up. A team has to be confident their guys are doing a good job because this sport is all about the survival of the fittest."

As for his future with Jaguar Racing, Irvine is waiting to judge the performance of the revised car before making any decisions. Jaguar have had a dismal season so far and the car is undoubtedly off the pace. The Irishman is hoping things will change but is not willing to continue with an uncompetitve machine.

"Keeping your job in F1 means you have to perform every time you step into the cockpit," he commented. "But, at the moment, I can't say I'm doing a good job. It's difficult to make any judgements when we are lining up at the back of the grid race after race. The time to start questioning whether I still have what it takes will be when our revised car takes to the track. That will be Judgment Day for me...and the team. I have made no secret about wishing to stay with Jaguar if I feel they can be consistent point scorers - and providing they want me."

"But if the revised car isn't better then I'll happily ride off into the sunset because there wouldn't be much enjoyment in repeating what we have been going through this season. I am in the sport for fun, not money. After all these years I still love the enjoyment of driving on the limit but it has to be in a car capable of running near the front. That's why only the chance to drive a really competitive package again will see me continuing in this sport for another season."

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About this article
Series Formula 1
Drivers Eddie Irvine , Andre Lotterer , James Courtney , Fernando Alonso
Teams Jaguar Racing , Jordan