The Minardi F1 team announced on Tuesday that it would renew its engine supply contract with Cosworth Racing next year and would continue using a V10 engine, rather than an FIA-sanctioned 3,2-litre V8.

The Minardi F1 team announced on Tuesday that it would renew its engine supply contract with Cosworth Racing next year and would continue using a V10 engine, rather than an FIA-sanctioned 3,2-litre V8.

The team's decision to use a redeveloped version of the current 3,0-litre TJ V10 engine by Cosworth has been cemented with the agreement to use the engine in the 2006 season. The team has an option to extend the contract into the 2007 season.

The power unit was subjected to testing recently at the Mugello circuit and again with the San Marino Grand Prix at Imola.

Minardi team principal, Paul Stoddart said: "We have been exceptionally impressed with the TJ2005 engine just in the short time we have been running it in the PS05. We can't praise highly enough the power, driveability and reliability of the new power unit, and we are more than pleased to demonstrate our belief in Cosworth by entering into this contractual arrangement at an early stage of the new season. In terms of engine supply, this is definitely the right way for Minardi to go."

"Cosworth is delighted to be extending its partnership with Minardi into 2006, as it is a team with which we have enjoyed a longstanding, and close relationship over the years," said Cosworth managing director, Tim Routsis.

"It is also fair to say there are mutual benefits in such an arrangement. On the one hand, it has always been an integral part of Cosworth's philosophy to test its products to the limit at the top levels of international motorsport. On the other, it is pleasing for our company, which is now an independent engine manufacturer, to continue to support one of the last true independent teams on the Formula One grid."

The sport's ruling body has determined that teams who are unable to source a new V8 engine can continue using the V10 engines until 2007, with their power restricted with the use of rev limiters set by the FIA. However, it is expected that teams using the new V8s should remain competitive despite the 20 per cent reduction in engine capacity.