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Last Updated: Tuesday, 28 March 2006, 11:09 GMT 12:09 UK
Stoddart plots F1 return in 2008
Paul Stoddart
Minardi made their F1 debut under Stoddart in 1985
Former Minardi boss Paul Stoddart has submitted a surprise entry for the 2008 Formula One championship.

Stoddart sold Minardi to Red Bull last year but has made clear his intentions to get back into the sport with a new-look team in two years' time.

"I've lodged myself an entry as European Minardi F1 team Limited," said the Australian aviation entrepreneur.

The sport's governing body, the FIA, have stipulated that all entries for 2008 must be submitted by 31 March.

All 11 teams taking part in Sunday's Australian Grand Prix have already lodged their applications, with F1 boss Bernie Ecclestone insisting there will be room for only 12 in total.

It might not happen but I miss F1 too badly at the moment
Paul Stoddart

Minardi made their debut in 1985 and went on to start 340 grands prix, becoming one of the sport's most popular teams in the process, despite persistent financial struggles.

Stoddart revealed that he retained the rights to the Minardi name as well as the 2004 specification cars.

The 2002 specification Arrows cars that he sold to new entrants Super Aguri have been more competitive than expected.

"We've got the cars we ran in Melbourne last year, we've got the team and we've got the facility," he said.

"We are in a better position than anyone, other than a current F1 team, to compete.

"We'll see what happens. It might not happen but I miss F1 too badly at the moment. I might not get a slot but it will be interesting to see who does."

Red Bull's new owner, Dietrich Mateschitz, renamed the Minardi team Scuderia Toro Rosso when he took over in November.

His aim was to use the team to try out and develop promising drivers, with Scott Speed and Vitantonio Liuzzi getting the responsibilities for the 2006 season.

FIA President Max Mosley said in January that he believed there were three or four new teams interested in joining in 2008 if costs were significantly reduced.

The governing FIA wants to ensure smaller independent teams can compete with the manufacturers that dominate the sport and has drafted regulations to assist them.

Scuderia Toro Rosso
03 Mar 06 |  Teams
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24 Nov 05 |  Formula One
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11 Sep 05 |  Formula One
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16 Oct 05 |  Formula One
Red Bull Racing
03 Mar 06 |  Formula One


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