Narain Karthikeyan is not guaranteed his HRT seat for the whole of the 2012 season. Following what the reporter referred to as a ‘chat’ with the Indian driver, the Times of India claimed Karthikeyan is “a million euros” short of a contract that will see him definitely race through November’s Brazil finale.
The 35-year-old also began the 2011 season for the struggling Spanish team, but was replaced by the Red Bull-funded Daniel Ricciardo mid-season. The Times of India said securing the extra million in sponsorship is proving “difficult” for Karthikeyan.
“Sponsors are happy to give him money but not to the team, as obviously they do not want to be associated with a struggling outfit,” the report said.
The good news for Karthikeyan, according to the journalist Harish Samtani, is that his sponsorship deal with Tata brings to HRT the Williams gearbox, valued at about EUR 5 million. The report said the link between Karthikeyan and Williams is the British team’s joint venture with Jaguar, which is owned by the driver’s sponsor Tata.