• Sauber

Van der Garde case to continue on Saturday

ESPN Staff
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The legal battle between Giedo van der Garde and Sauber will rumble on into Saturday morning, though "constructive discussions" have taken place between both parties.

Van der Garde has been granted the legal right to drive for Sauber at the Australian Grand Prix this weekend but did not take to the track on Friday due to a lack of a superlicence. In the afternoon the Supreme Court of Victoria was due to decide whether Sauber was in contempt of court for not taking the necessary steps to ensure van der Garde could drive this weekend. Possible outcomes could include the seizure of Sauber assets at the circuit or even team boss Monisha Kaltenborn facing prison.

However, that hearing was delayed, before both Felipe Nasr and Marcus Ericsson emerged from the garage in FP2 having missed the first session of the grand prix weekend. Their appearance on track suggested progress had been made in finding a resolution.

Van der Garde's lawyer confirmed as much when he said there had been "constructive discussions between the parties which are expected to continue this evening," a statement echoed by Sauber's legal team. The hearing was adjourned until 0930 local time on Saturday morning, with Justice Croft telling both sides: "I do wish the parties to talk seriously about resolving this matter by agreement."

Without a superlicence, it seems unlikely van der Garde will be able to compete at any stage this weekend. It is now too late for the Contract Recognition Board (CFB) to confirm his Sauber contract is valid, which is a mandatory step for a superlicence to be approved.

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