On Tuesday morning the Caterham factory in Leafield was visited by bailiffs, with instructions to seize assets belonging to the team because of bills that had not been paid. The team has issued a statement saying that there have been “unfounded and unsubstantiated rumours” concerning actions against 1MRT, the entrant and owner of Caterham F1. The statement said that “all operations are currently in place at Leafield and the race team is doing its preparation in Japan”.
At the same time, an organisation known as The Sheriffs Office says on its website that it has “goods” that were “seized and removed from an F1 team”. These include a 2013 Caterham F1 car, 2014 F1 parts, the team’s F1 simulator, steering wheels, drilling and machining equipment and other equipment and memorabilia. This is being offered for sale and will be sold to the highest bidder in a public auction some time in mid-October. The website says that interested parties should contact firstname.lastname@example.org to register their interest. To read more click here.
The key question is who owes what and why it has not been paid and this seems to be a very complicated story not only involving the new owners but also the previous owner. This is obviously a problem but the team’s equipment will be out of the UK from now until the last race and so is unlikely to be affected, and any parts needed can probably be built by subcontractors in Germany.