The USF1 saga may have taken a turn for the worse today as Autosport reports that the hopeful team's operations have 'effectively been shut down.' Team personnel and the remainder of the operation's employees were reportedly given the news today that their services would no longer be needed, though some unknown number of them technically remain employed (albeit unpaid).

Assuming for a moment that this news is accurate – though it's yet to be confirmed, the team's recent woes certainly mean this report is stupendously unsurprising – it's not clear what USF1 investor and YouTube co-founder Chad Hurley will do, though SpeedTV is reporting he may just cut his losses and get out of the Formula 1 game entirely.

Serbian outfit Stefan Grand Prix is thought to be the leading candidate to fill the vacancy left by USF1's departure from the 2010 grid. We'll likely get some sort of response from the FIA within the next few days. Stay tuned, race fans.

[Source: Autosport]