Oct.22 (GMM) Flavio Briatore has issued an abrupt denial to unlikely speculation that French racer Sebastien Bourdais might be an option for a Renault race seat in 2009.
Bourdais, the 29-year-old F1 rookie and a multiple title winner of the defunct American series Champ Car, is "too old" to be considered by Renault, team boss Briatore is quoted as saying in the French sports daily L'Equipe.Briatore's comments reinforce expectations that, should a vacancy arise for next year, Renault-linked youngsters like Lucas di Grassi and Romain Grosjean are at the head of the queue.Briatore also seems happier now with Nelson Piquet. "Fuji and Shanghai were new circuits for him, and he learn them quickly."Previously, he was pretty weak on new tracks," the Italian told Auto Motor und Sport.The German magazine also reports that Bourdais is only prepared to wait until the end of this month for Toro Rosso chiefs to sign him up for 2009.Should he not find a job in F1 for next year, he is lining up options to return to the American scene."For sure, there are some options but for now the target is to stay here," Bourdais confirmed.Auto Motor und Sport contends that Bourdais' biggest obstacle to a renewed contract at Toro Rosso is Helmut Marko, Red Bull's motor racing advisor.Reportedly, Marko would like to see Sebastien Buemi line up alongside Force India test driver Vitantonio Liuzzi in 2009.