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Last Updated: Tuesday, 29 June, 2004, 17:08 GMT 18:08 UK
Perpetual struggle

Nationality: Italian
Engine: Cosworth V10
Tyres: Bridgestone
Team principal: Paul Stoddart
Years in F1: 20
2004 position: 10th
Drivers' titles: 0
Constructors' titles: 0
Minardi have faced another struggle to survive this season after being handed a healthy dose of realism in 2003.

They headed into last season full of optimism that they could start to make progress up the grid.

But despite a strong driver line-up and decent engine deal, Minardi remained rooted firmly to the back of the grid.

With the unproven Gianmaria Bruni and journeyman Zsolt Baumgartner, there was little reason for optimism this time, and so it has proved.

Minardi have always been renowned for producing tidy and effective cars on a budget which is a fraction of the bigger teams.

But even that reputation has taken a bit of a battering in recent years.

And while one has to admire the tenacity of Minardi boss Paul Stoddart, it remains the case that F1 is nothing more than a desperate battle for survival for him and his team.

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