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Trial 'won't affect Minardi'
Paul Stoddart's Formula One team will not be affected by a court trial involving founder and current employee Gian Carlo Minardi. The Italian, and financial director Stefano Sangiorgi, are charged with illegal financial activity relating to team sponsorship deals in the mid-90's.
Stoddart took over in late-2000. "It's improper to comment when a court case is in progress," a Minardi spokesman at Faenza told us.
He added: "But I can categorically confirm that whatever the outcome of the trial, it will not have any effect on the operation of the ... team
Kiesa unlikely to return
Nicolas Kiesa is unlikely to return to Formula One next year with Minardi. The Dane, who had a fleeting grand prix flirt in 2003 following Justin Wilson's move from Minardi to Jaguar, was thought to have found enough sponsorship to renew the affection of owner Paul Stoddart.
But a source at the Italian team now says the Minardi principal will almost certainly make a selection for 2005 'from among the list of drivers present at (the recent) Misano (test).'
Kiesa did not test a black car in Italy
The Faenza-based source also advised media publications to ignore the tips of enthusiastic driver-management representatives. "Anything that may be said," he added, "falls into the realm of speculation."