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F1: Hispania Racing Poised for Major Changes

Tarish Bhatt
640   //    01 Jul 2011, 13:53 IST

Hispania Racing Team is set to make some major changes as Torro Rosso Reserve driver Daniel Ricciardo will take over the driving duties for the Spanish outfit and also the team Principal Colin Kolles will be stepping aside. The owner of the team, Carabante family will takeover the direct control of the team.

Torro Rosso reserve driver Daniel Ricciardo will effectively replace Narain Karthikeyan in the Hipania team. Narain hasn’t had a great outing in the Formula 1 this time around and has been outpaced by his team mate Tonio Liuzzi almost every time. However, Narain still has a chance to drive in his home race at Indian Grand Prix. Daniel will be the second Australian driver on the grid alongside Mark Webber.

Ricciardo is effectively being loaned by the Red Bull to Hispania. Ricciardo is also set to replace either Buemi or Alguersuari after this season at Torro Rosso. Hispania team chairman Jose Ramon said that they are happy to give Ricciardo a seat in the Hispania team. Jose also said that because of the deal the Hispania and Red Bull could effectively start a greater collaboration between the two outfits.

The Australian driver said that he is very excited and still can’t believe that he has got a Formula 1 drive. He also said that it is a dream come true and he can’t wait to drive at Silverstone. He said that he wants to give his best with his new outfit. Ricciardo has driven the Torro Rosso car regularly in the Friday free practice season but racing in it is going to be a complete new experience.

Apart from the driving department, Hispania is also making a change in the management department of the team. Collin Kolles is set to leave the day to day activities of the team and most probably Jose Ramon or his son will take up the duties of the team principal. Collin Kolles will remain attached to the team and will help Jose or his son in that period. There are also strong speculations that he might be switching to Williams F1 in 2012.

Kolles has been the spearhead of the team and has done lots of work to make the team come to the grid. Hispania, which was earlier known as Campos Meta, failed to make up for the 2010 season but because of Collin’s efforts, the team at-least made up to the Bahrain GP grid. He worked hard to improve the infrastructure of the team even with the limited resources. Recently, the Hispania team also does a tie-up with Mercedes GP to use their wind tunnel. Collin Kolles also made Geoff Willis the head of the technical affairs in order to improve the team.

However, it is not clear when will the management change take place but, the driving changes have been. Hispania after a disappointing one and a half season now going from a transition phase and it might help the Spanish outfit to improve their performance.

Tarish Bhatt
A complete sports buff, you name the sport and I am there! A Formula 1 fanatic and big fan of Narain Karthikeyan, Adrian Sutil, Somdev Devvarman and Hugh Jackman!
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