Minardi must pay for engines in advance

Tony Purnell, the chief executive of Ford's Premier Performance Division, has revealed that Minardi has yet to pay for its 2003 Ford Cosworth engines and needs to make a substantial payment before the season begins if he wishes to have the engines. It is believed that the team needs around $5m before the Australian GP.

Stoddart admits that things are not easy at the moment but says that he is waiting for the arrival of substantial sponsorship which is agreed but late. Stoddart however makes no secret of the fact that the team needs more cash and he is hoping the Bernie Ecclestone will be successful in his bid to raise a fund to help the small teams bu charging the big team for TV coverage they receive.

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