Caterham can miss U.S. and Brazilian Grands Prix with Bernie Ecclestone's permission
Hope expressed that a buyer of "substantial financial means" can be found by the end of the season
By Sky Sports Online
Last Updated: 27/10/14 11:06am
Caterham have been given permission to miss the upcoming two races in Austin and Brazil while a buyer is sought for the cash-strapped team.
A statement issued on Friday by the administrators in London-based accountancy firm Smith & Williamson has effectively confirmed that the Leafield-based team will not be in a position to compete in next weekend's United States Grand Prix and the subsequent race a week later in Brazil.
Administrator Finbarr O'Connell, who was forced to close the gates to the team's factory at Leafield on Thursday, has told Caterham staff not to return until a deal has been completed.
Hope has been expressed that a buyer of "substantial financial means" can quickly be found in order that Caterham can be back on the grid for the final race of the season in Abu Dhabi on November 21-23.
Ordinarily, any team missing a race would be in breach of their contractual obligation to the sport's commercial rights holder.
However, Ecclestone said the circumstances of Caterham's plight made that impossible and he is supporting the administrators in their efforts to find new finance.
A statement from the FIA read: "In a telephone conversation today between Finbarr O'Connell and Bernie Ecclestone, Mr Ecclestone agreed to support the administrators in their wish to sell the Formula One team to a party with the financial strength to sustain it into the future.
"Mr Ecclestone also agreed to give dispensation to Caterham F1 such that it could, if necessary, miss the US and Brazilian Grands Prix, but hoped that a new owner would be in a position to race the team at the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix.
"Mr Colin Kolles, the previous principal of the team, offered today to hand over management control of 1MRT to the administrators.
"Lawyers for the administrators and Mr Kolles are currently working on the paperwork to effect this transfer.
"The administrators have already been contacted by a number of interested parties expressing a wish to buy the team and they hope a transaction with an operator of substantial financial means can be concluded in the next few weeks.
"It is hoped that any purchaser of the F1 team will take over the employees and they will be able to recommence their work including that at the Leafield site."
The news comes at the end of a particularly turbulent week for Caterham, whose future has been in jeopardy for months.
A group of Swiss-Middle-Eastern investors advised by Kolles took change of the team when previous owner Tony Fernandes sold up at the end of June.
But after the administators moved in late last week, both parties embarked upon a war of words with each accusing the other of failing to honour the deal.