The future may look more secure for Eddie Jordan since a group of investors bought almost half of his F1 team, but the Irishman is having difficulty securing an engine deal for next year.

The future may look more secure for Eddie Jordan since a group of investors bought almost half of his F1 team, but the Irishman is having difficulty securing an engine deal for next year.


Earlier this month, a group of Irish investors bought a major slice of Jordan Grand Prix, though Eddie Jordan remains in control of the company. The group bought the 49,9 per cent shareholding of the F1 team previously owned by investment bankers Warburg Pincus, raising hopes that the team would be able to overcome its financial difficulties.


Jordan is apparently not happy with the way negotiations have been going for securing an engine deal for next season. Currently supplied by the Cosworth division of Ford, Jordan is reportedly trying to finalize a deal with Mercedes-Benz but the price the Irishman expected to pay apparently changed before contracts were signed, British tabloid reports.


"I just hate the fact that we were led to believe the Mercedes engines would be priced at R80,62 million or less," Jordan was quoted as saying. "It's frustrating because we agreed a figure and then it changed by the time the contracts were drawn up."


Meanwhile, Jordan's current engine supplier Ford was reluctant to give up its deal with the team but Jordan couldn't agree to its terms either: "As regards Ford and the deal they came to us with, it's more than the R80,62 million," he said. "They wanted to use the Jordan name and have space on the car but I'm afraid we don't give space away for free."


The team, which is reportedly keen to secure veteran and former Jordan pilot Heinz-Harald Frentzen for next year, has not yet revealed a driver line up for 2004. Giancarlo Fisichella announced his decision to move to Sauber next year before the end of this season, but Jordan thinks the Swiss squad is not an improvement from his own team and expects to be beating Sauber in 2004.


"I don't consider the Sauber team any better than Jordan, although it has a little more money," Jordan said. "I wanted Giancarlo in a top three or four team because invariably Jordan bounces back from its reverses. I would expect that next season we will be beating Sauber."