MX23RW : Saturday, July 31 20:08:31| >> :600:127165:127165:

Marcus Ericsson's backers buy Sauber?

Monisha Kaltenborn declines to confirm or deny reports that it is Marcus Ericsson's Swedish backers who have bought the Sauber team.

Monisha Kaltenborn has declined to confirm or deny reports that it is Marcus Ericsson's Swedish backers who have bought the Sauber team.

The Swiss outfit announced on Wednesday that it will be fully acquired by a Swiss-based group called Longbow Finance, resulting in the retirement of founder Peter Sauber.

"As a Swiss company, we are very pleased with having secured the future of a Swiss presence in a highly specialised and innovative industry," said Longbow's Pascal Picci.

Yet Swiss newspaper Blick claims that Longbow is in fact powered by Tetra Laval, a Swedish multinational headed by billionaire Hans Rausing that already finances Sauber driver Ericsson's seat.

"On the background of the purchase agreement, we do not comment," Kaltenborn, who remains team boss, told the newspaper when asked about the Tetra Pak rumours on Thursday.

She also would not say what Longbow has paid for the team, which will continue to be called Sauber.

Kaltenborn admitted: "Of course I am very relieved and happy that we found a solution. It is certainly one of the best days in my tenure as team boss.

"Now we need to stabilise as a company and then move forward step by step.

"Having a competitive car as soon as possible is one of the key strategic objectives. But giant leaps should not be expected this season. The challenges remain enormous, but now at least they are positive challenges."

Kaltenborn also would not comment on claims that, with Ericsson's backers now owning Sauber, the 25-year-old Swedish driver's career is at least secure.

"As I said, we will analyse and discuss all of this in the next weeks. We only ever do contracts for one year with drivers," she insisted.

The season continues this weekend with the Hungarian Grand Prix.

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Olympic medal table header
CountryGold medalSilver MedalBronze MedalT
ChinaChina21131246
JapanJapan175830
United StatesUnited States16171346
Olympics flagOlympic Athletes from Russia11151137
AustraliaAustralia1031427
Great BritainGreat Britain891128
Today's Olympic highlights header

Sunday's key events


GOLF
· The men's golf reaches its conclusion, with plenty of players still in medal contention. Home favourite Hideki Matsuyama is one shot off Xander Schauffele's lead, while Great Britain's Paul Casey is another shot further back and Tommy Fleetwood is also in the mix (11.30pm-8am)

CYCLING - BMX
· Great Britain have already made history in the BMX events in Tokyo, something Charlotte Worthington and Declan Brooks will be looking to add to in the women's (2.10am) and men's (3.10am) freestyle finals

SWIMMING
· The final day of swimming action begins with the men's 50m freestyle final. Ben Proud could add to a medal-laden Games in the pool for Team GB so far, although he is up against USA's Caeleb Dressel, who is going for his fourth gold in Tokyo (2.30am)
· From sprint to endurance, Great Britain's second medal hope of the day comes through Daniel Jervis in the men's 1500m freestyle final (2.44am)
· Team GB will again be among the heavy favourites for gold in the last swimming event of the Games - the men's 4x100m medley relay final - having won the mixed event in a world record time on Saturday (3.36am)

BOXING
· Already guaranteed at least a bronze, Pat McCormack takes part in the men's welterweight semi-final against Ireland's Aidan Walsh with a spot in the gold medal final at stake (4.03am)
· Ben Whittaker is also in the semi-finals of the men's light heavyweight and will be looking to continue Team GB's success in the ring (4.51am)

TENNIS
· There will be a surprise on the top of the men's tennis podium after Novak Djokovic missed out on a medal altogether. Alexander Zverev takes on Karen Khachanov in the second match on Centre Court at the Ariake Tennis Park (7am-2pm)

SAILING
· Alison Young will be going for gold in the women's laser radial medal race (7.33am)

ARTISTIC GYMNASTICS
· Team GB's Max Whitlock will look to defend his 2016 Olympic title in the men's pommel horse final (10.41am)

ATHLETICS
· The men's high jump final includes GB's Tom Gale, although his chances of a medal look bleak (11.10am)
· So often the blue-riband event of the Olympics, the men's 100m final takes place as the world's fastest bid to be crowned Usain Bolt's successor. Three Brits have made it into the semi-finals (11.15am-11.32am), and the final looks wide open after an underwhelming display by favourite Trayvon Bromell on Saturday (1.50pm)

HOCKEY
· Great Britain face India in the men's quarter-final (1pm)

> Today's schedule in full
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