Lotus dispute about money says Lopez
31 January, 2011
Jan.31 (GMM) The Lotus naming dispute is simply about money, Renault team owner Gerard Lopez said on Monday.
He was speaking at Valencia, where the newly Lotus-sponsored Renault revealed its 2011 car, mere hours after the entirely separate Team Lotus launched another car that will also carry the evocative brand name this season.
Group Lotus terminated Tony Fernandes’ naming license for 2011 and has teamed up with Renault, with a dispute to now be played out in the High Court as neither side is backing down.
Lopez, head of the Renault owner Genii Capital, accused Fernandes of sticking to his guns for no reason other than money.
“I’ve dealt with the press for many years, not just in formula one but also in business, and you’ve got to call a spade a spade, and I can tell when somebody is trying to twist things,” he said.
The reality, said Lopez, is that Fernandes is not fighting for the Lotus legacy but simply for F1 income.
“It’s the fact that if 1Malaysia Racing (Team Lotus) changes their name, they lose their FOM money,” he insisted.
“It’s an issue for them, and it’s probably one I wouldn’t take too kindly to if I was in their shoes. But just admit to the reality, that it’s about money. It’s nothing else,” added Lopez.