Pastor Maldonado continues to send out mixed messages about his future plans, indicating that he is close to a deal, while at the same time insisting that he has a chance at Lotus, Sauber and Force India.
While the Venezuelan has been linked to Lotus for months, he recently became a serious contender for a Sauber seat, as well.
“For sure, everything is running,” Maldonado said Thursday. “I really hope to have a confirmation quite soon. But I don’t have any hurry. We are working on that. We’ll see. It could be hours, days, even months. I hope to get the 100 percent from the negotiations.
“Sometimes when you are negotiating, it takes some time, and it’s taking some time,” he said. “But it’s quite clear that I will be in F1, it’s quite clear where, and everything. I still have some options, but I have my preference. It’s my personal view. I’ve been discussing with my manager, my backers, my father, the close people who are supporting me at the moment.
“Lotus, for sure, is a good option, but even Sauber is a good option, even Force India is a good option — they showed that they are good teams, they’ve been very competitive, they’ve been more competitive than McLaren this year at the beginning. I think all of them have good potential for the future. We all know very well where are the available seats. I will be in one of them. And we’ll see.”
He says he’s aware of the financial situation at Lotus.
“When you value a team, for sure you value everything, the background, the sponsoring situations, everything — not only the car,” Maldonado said.
Maldonado also says that he doesn’t know whether main sponsor PDVSA will continue with him or not, casting a little further confusion over his situation.
“It’s not down to me, the decision of PDVSA,” he said. “For sure, they’ve been supporting me for a while. Maybe they don’t want to continue. They left Williams from this race, this will be the final race for both, and I don’t know exactly if they want to continue. Maybe not, maybe yes. I don’t know that 100 percent they want to continue, they want to go for another team or not.”F1, Force India, Formula 1, Formula One, Lotus, McLaren, Pastor Maldonado, Sauber