F1: Caterham turn to fans to help them raise £2.35m to get them on the grid for Abu Dhabi Grand Prix

On the same day that Marussia ceased trading, Caterham have launched a crowd-funding project to get back on the grid

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The Independent Online

The administrators at Caterham have launched a crowd-funding project in a bid to get the cash-strapped team on the grid for the final race of the season in Abu Dhabi.

On the day it was confirmed Marussia had ceased trading and made over 200 staff redundant, it is clear Caterham are also now struggling to secure their future.

London-based accountancy firm Smith & Williamson is looking to raise £2.35million from fans around the world to enable Caterham to take part in the season-ending race at the Yas Marina circuit on November 23.

Finbarr O'Connell, administrator and interim Caterham team principal, said: "We are working non-stop to get the team back racing, initially in Abu Dhabi.

 

"But hopefully that will be just a stepping stone to get it back racing on a permanent basis, under new ownership.

"In order to achieve that one of our most useful, innovative and effective options right now is crowd-funding."

Using the line #RefuelCaterhamF1, the administrators have turned to crowdcube.com for the crowdfunding scheme, an organisation that has raised £45million for more than 150 organisations since 2011.

O'Connell has until next Friday to accumulate the cash, otherwise it appears certain Caterham will go the way of Marussia and also cease trading.

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Companies and fans are being asked to pledge a minimum of £10, with the promise of unique rewards in return, such as their name on the car for the race in Abu Dhabi.

O'Connell added: "We want to get as many sponsors and fans as possible involved this week and make our comeback something we can all be part of.

"This team deserves a future, and I'm sure there are plenty of fans and companies out there that agree with us.

"So I can't think of a better way to get us all together and show our support to the team than this one.

"If we don't hit the target by next Friday obviously the pledged funds will be returned.

"But right now we are hopeful for the future of the team and we are confident of the team showing the world it can race again will lead to a bright future under a new owner on a proper financial footing."

PA

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