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  Sunday, 18 August, 2002, 11:27 GMT 12:27 UK
Webber to race for Jaguar
Mark Webber and Pedro de la Rosa
Webber (left) will partner De la Rosa at Jaguar in 2003
Rising Formula One star Mark Webber is understood to have signed to race for the Jaguar team in 2003.

The Australian, who has impressed in his debut season with Minardi this year, will partner Spaniard Pedro de la Rosa.

Jaguar have yet to announce that Webber is joining the team, but a source has confirmed to the BBC that a deal has been done.

The move has been widely anticipated in F1 after Webber impressed the team in a test in June, and it leaves Northern Irishman Eddie Irvine without a drive for 2003.

Irvine has yet to reveal his plans for the future, but he has ruled out racing in the USA in either the Cart or Indy Racing League series.

Eddie Irvine
Irvine is contemplating his future

Irvine said: I've a reasonable idea of what I want to do, but I'm not really any closer to making a decision.

"I'm not enjoying it as much as I did last year. Last year I had lot of fun in the races, but this year it's been difficult.

"I know guys like Webber are being linked, which is an obvious thing because the guy has done good races, but I'm not worried in the slightest."

Irvine has hinted he might become a test driver, and there has been speculation that he might go to Jordan in place of Takuma Sato, whose place is under threat.

Team boss Eddie Jordan refused at the Hungarian Grand Prix to confirm the Japanese rookie would be staying with the team, even though he has a contract for 2003.

Sato's place is especially vulnerable because he is a favourite of engine supplier Honda, who Jordan have split with so they can use Ford Cosworth engines for the next three years.

Jordan said: "Takuma is a Jordan driver, he has a Jordan contract. Of course when the dust settles a bit we will discuss that because he is also a part of the Honda dream.

"If Honda want to do something directly, and they come to us like we came to them with regard to the release on the engine, we will talk to them.

"But I have no plans at the moment to replace Sato. I think he is a really quick driver."

Jordan will retain lead driver Italian Giancarlo Fisichella next season.

In-depth guide to the 2002 Formula One season

On-track action

Race statistics

Budapest build-up

Jonathan Legard

F1 2002
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