Tuesday November 13th, 2001
Alain Prost has admitted his struggling team are in "a serious situation" as he continues to push to find new funding to ensure the French outfit make the grid in 2002.
The former Formula One driver has denied reports that major shareholder Pedro Diniz has left the team, but added that he is in talks with Prince Alwaleed of Saudi Arabia in a bid to secure the team's future.
"Pedro is still a shareholder of the team and, except for August, he has always been attending meetings of Prost Grand Prix," Prost said. "But at the moment I cannot tell what will happen if a shareholder comes in. We just don't know - but it is not as desperate as people say.
"There are still many people willing to help us and one important fact is that no key element has left us. Even (Heinz-Harald) Frentzen has been clear about his will to stay."
But Prost admitted the battle for funding has set the team back, and said they will be already on the back foot when the season starts in March. Lack of funding means the new AP05 car will not be launched alongside most other team's 2002 chargers in January as the team are still to confirm their drivers and an engine deal for next year.
Published at 11:49:53 GMT