Oct.27 (GMM) Clear signs are emerging that Toyota could be contemplating its future on the formula one grid.
The Japanese giant, which entered the sport in 2002, was perhaps the most enraged among F1's manufacturer ranks at the proposal of a single engine formula.Even though that prospect has receded, Toyota Motorsport president John Howett recently admitted the move "would be a reason" for the Cologne based team to quit F1.Now, in the pages of the German magazine Auto Motor und Sport, it is suggested that Toyota sees returning to Le Mans-style prototype sports car racing as an alternative to F1 beyond 2010.At this year's Le Mans 24 hour race, for instance, a dozen ununiformed Toyota engineers were present, armed with cameras and reportedly sizing up the current competitors.Additionally, at the American Le Mans Series race in Detroit in August, Toyota officials met with representatives of the series' organising body ACO."We would like to go back to Le Mans," Toyota's F1 team boss Tadashi Yamashina confirms. "The final decision is budgetary."Under the present economic conditions, it is unlikely that we could do formula one and Le Mans in a parallel fashion," he explained.