Mike Stevens | Aug 20, 2009

BMW SAUBER HAS SUBMITTED an application to claim the 13th spot on the Formula 1 grid for next season in a bid to secure the future of the team’s Hinwil-based workforce.

Following BMW’s decision to withdraw from the sport of the end of the season, the FIA invited teams who missed out on securing a berth earlier in the year to resubmit an entry, including the likes of Epsilon-Euskadi and Prodrive.

But with investors reportedly circling the soon-to-be-former BMW-backed outfit, the team has chosen to launch a late bid to retake its place on the grid for the 2010 season.

However, the situation creates a huge dilemma for both the team and the FIA, as the sport’s governing body will be unwilling to accept an entry from a team without stable financial backing, while investors won’t inject cash into the Swiss-team without guaranteed participation next year.

Further muddying the waters is the revelation BMW won’t be liable to pay out the wages of staff made redundant by the company’s decision to leave the sport, unlike Honda, which was bound by British law.

This will allow BMW to simply shut down operations without any threat of financial recourse by staff, making it a potentially attractive option.

mario-thiessen_01

However, despite the team’s clouded future, BMW Sauber boss Mario Theissen remains committed to continuing development of the team’s ‘09 challenger for the remainder of the season.

Theissen believes an improved showing by the outfit in the final seven races of 2009 season will aid the team’s efforts to find a new owner.

“The team had established itself at the top in just three years and we would love to have shown that the poor results we've had this season were just a blip. Now our work is focusing on the next few months,” he said.

"While efforts are continuing behind the scenes to find a solution for the team, everybody is aware that putting in good performances at the circuits is the best way to advertise their abilities.

“We want to get back into the fast lane and so the development packages for Valencia and Singapore will be put into practice as planned.”

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