Gil de Ferran quits Honda F1 team

<img border='0' align='left' title=' ' src='' class='caption'> Gil de Ferran left as sporting director of Formula One team Honda on Monday.

Updated: July 19, 2007 07:17 IST
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Brackley, England:

Gil de Ferran left as sporting director of Formula One team Honda on Monday.

The 2003 Indy 500 champion left the team by mutual agreement to pursue other opportunities, Honda chief executive Nick Fry said.

Honda has struggled this season, with Jenson Button in 16th place and Rubens Barrichello in 18th in the F1 drivers' standings.

"I am disappointed that Gil is leaving our team," Fry said. "However, a Formula One team is rather like a jigsaw puzzle in that every piece has to fit precisely in its place. Gil has become increasingly uncomfortable in his role and feels the time has now come to seek fresh opportunities."

De Ferran said his decision had been difficult.

"I simply feel that I came to this team to fulfill a particular role and it has not materialized as I had hoped," De Ferran said. "I would like to thank everyone at the team for the support I have been given and I wish them luck in the future."

De Ferran competed in British Formula 3 and Formula 3000 before racing on the CART circuit in the United States. He retired shortly after winning the Indy 500 and worked as a television commentator in the United States in 2004 before joining Honda in 2005.

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