FPR safe despite Prodrive’s withdrawal from FPV

Speedcafe.com

Thursday 30th August, 2012 - 12:50pm

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Mark Winterbottom at Sydney Motorsport Park last weekend

Mark Winterbottom at Sydney Motorsport Park last weekend

The future of Ford Performance Racing is safe, despite news that its owner Prodrive will pull out of road-car company Ford Performance Vehicles at the end of the year.

Previously a joint venture between Prodrive and Ford (51 percent/49 percent split respectively), the latter is now set to bring FPV in-house.

FPV boss Bryan Mears said in a statement today that “this has no impact on FPR.”

Established in 2002, the troubled FPV brand has seen declining sales in recent times. In June, FPV’s general manager Rod Barrett was sacked, replaced by Bryan Mears.

According to drive.com.au, Prodrive will officially pull out at the end of this year, when 32 FPV staff will be made redundant. That news was delivered to FPV workers at 10am today.

FPR’s current deal to represent Ford as its factory team in the V8 Supercars Championship expires at the end of 2013. FPR is soley owned by Prodrive, boasting the Ford and FPV brands as sponsors. It is believed that Prodrive is in negotiations with Ford to extended its current deal.

FPR team principal Tim Edwards says that Ford’s deal to buy out Prodrive will not affect its racing operations.

“Next year’s change of ownership at FPV in no way affects the future of FPR,” Edwards said in a statement.

“The race team’s future is secure and we are in a very healthy position. We are a separate business and all our plans for 2013 and beyond remain.

“The FPV brand continues which is very pleasing for us as it is one of the team’s founding commercial partners. Ford’s ownership will further strengthen our ties with them as we are intrinsically linked to the brand’s performance credentials.

“Obviously as the specific details of the new structure evolve we will discuss with Ford the nature of our relationship with the FPV brand. However, our immediate focus is on the enduros and the development of our Car of the Future program.”

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