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banner Thursday, 3 January, 2002, 14:09 GMT
BAR chief sets sights high
BAR's Jacques Villeneuve
BAR struggled last season and could only finish sixth
Newly appointed British American Racing team principal David Richards has set himself the stiff challenge of vying for the Formula One World Championship within three years.

Richards took over the reigns at BAR after the surprise departure of Craig Pollock, a close friend of the team's number one driver Jaques Villenueve.

And now Richards - who also runs rally preparation company Prodrive and the World Rally Championship - has targeted 2004 as the season BAR will make its big breakthrough.

However, Richards, who spent a fraught year in charge of Benetton in 1998, did admit that it would not be an easy task.

"I don't think this is going to be an overnight wonder and I think we have a very tough three years ahead," Richards told Autosport magazine.

David Richards
David Richards knows his task will not be easy
"But we're in the right place at the right time, and over the next couple of years you will see it all come together.

"The aim is to be in a title-winning position by 2004 - so if we work backwards we'll be challenging for wins and podiums in 2003.

"What that means for this year, it's still too early to say," he added.

BAR have just two podium finishes to their name and finished sixth in the World Championship last season with 17 points.

Former world champion Villeneuve has regularly expressed his disappointment with the car but more recently pledged his future to the team despite Pollock's departure.

The Canadian is under contract to the team until the end of 2003.

But there is a performance clause in his contract that he is likely to be able to invoke if he wants to leave at the end of this season.

See also:

18 Dec 01 |  Photo Galleries
BAR reveal 2002 car
18 Dec 01 |  Formula One
BAR appoint new boss
17 Dec 01 |  Formula One
Boss splits with BAR
27 Nov 01 |  Formula One
Pollock warns of cash crisis
15 Apr 01 |  Formula One
Pollock attacks BAR sell-off reports
10 Sep 00 |  Motorsport
Pollock facing BAR axe
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