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Lotus hints at bigger stake in RenaultF1 in future

ESPNF1 Staff
December 9, 2010 « Vettel 'head and shoulders above' rest, says Moss | »

Group Lotus CEO Dany Bahar has hinted that the organisation is interested in a larger stake of the RenaultF1 team in the future, perhaps even regarding a full takeover.

The Proton owned Group Lotus bought a share of the team, owned by Genii Capital, on Wednesday and was announced as the team's title sponsor. And speaking to the Telegraph on Thursday, Bahar revealed that buying a bigger slice of the Renault pie may be a future target in order to increase global awareness of its road cars.

"Yes, it is interesting to talk about control and shares and all that, but for us as a car manufacturer the bigger picture is far, far more relevant than just F1," said Bahar. "We are very, very aware that F1 is an evolving adventure. It can change in the future. Let's concentrate on today and tomorrow let's see what happens."

Genii Capital chairman and RenaultF1 majority shareholder Gerard Lopez was more guarded when asked about the longer term. "It's funny because the same question was asked of us a year ago when we bought the majority shareholding in Renault F1. It's not the kind of thing that we will be disclosing." he said.

Lopez also revealed that the team is close to retaining the services of Vitaly Petrov for 2011.

"Petrov is still our favourite choice. We were supposed to meet last week but he had eye surgery in Germany and had to go back home for two weeks until his eyes have recovered. And then he will be sitting down ... and discussing that."