- Naming rights
Team Lotus relinquishes name to Group
Team Lotus has confirmed that it has agreed a settlement with Proton and Group Lotus, which involves the group regaining the sole rights to the use of the Team Lotus name in Formula One.
Tony Fernandes had purchased the rights from previous holder David Hunt and earlier this year won the right to continuing using the name in Formula One, while the Group Lotus-sponsored Renault team could only run the Lotus name alone. Fernandes has since purchased Caterham cars, and last week an F1 Commission meeting approved a chassis name change from Team Lotus to Caterham for 2012, while Renault will switch to Lotus.
What's in a name?
- The team racing this season under the Lotus name (officially Team Lotus) will compete as Caterham F1 from the start of 2012
- The team racing this season under the Lotus Renault name (owned by Group Lotus) will compete as Lotus from the start of 2012
- The team racing under the Virgin name will compete as Marussia F1 from the start of 2012
It has now been confirmed that Group Lotus has acquired the rights to the Team Lotus name from Fernandes' 1Malaysia Racing Team, which will run under the name of Caterham F1 Team next season. Group CEO Riad Asmat said that the team would now be able to create its own history.
"We are proud of what we have achieved by bringing the Team Lotus name back to Formula One when many tried and although we are sad to say goodbye to Team Lotus we are excited about owning our own future and being in control of our own destiny. Now we have no one to be compared to. We make our own history and we will remain green and yellow.
"Now we look forward to an exciting future racing under our new team name of Caterham F1 Team. Please continue to support our very special spirit of never say die and support us on the track as we move up the field and demonstrate that the good do win."
Group Lotus CEO Dany Bahar also said that he was pleased that a settlement had been reached and that only one team would bear the Lotus name in 2012.
"On behalf of Group Lotus and Proton I would like to express how pleased we are that this matter is finally closed and we can now focus on looking forward to the future. We understand that this has been a very difficult and confusing time for the fans of the sport and the Lotus brand so we are glad to have reached a clear resolution on this important matter - I would like to take this opportunity to thank our fans for their continued support, it means everything to us."