|Team||Lotus F1 Team|
|Power Unit||Renault Sport Engine F1-2014|
Lotus F1 Team
CAN THE SUCCESS STORY CONTINUE?
The Lotus team has been one of the success stories of the past two seasons with two victories and around 20 podium finishes. However the team suffered high-profile financial issues at the end of last season, having lost its star driver Kimi Räikkönen, its Technical Director James Allison to Ferrari, and former Team Principal Eric Boullier to McLaren. It therefore raises a big question mark over whether the success story will continue.
Heading the team into 2014 is Romain Grosjean, who has rapidly matured from the crash-prone “enfant terrible” of Formula OneTM to become a well regarded and respected driver. He is joined by Pastor Maldonado, another driver who has carved a similar reputation for impetuosity, a reputation not helped by a lacklustre 2013 season at Williams which tarnished the shine of his one-off victory for the team in Spain in 2012.
The Lotus team is of course no stranger to ups and downs in fortune. The Lotus name will forever be associated with the brilliant achievements of designer Colin Chapman and champions such Jim Clark, Emerson Fittipaldi and Mario Andretti, and later with the black-and-gold cars that carried Ayrton Senna to early success. The current team also has its own history, that has won championships under several different names in the past.
The team’s headquarters, the Whiteways Technical Centre at Enstone in England and many of its longer-serving personnel, trace their lineage back to the Benetton team which gave Michael Schumacher his first two world champions’ titles back in 1994 and 1995. In 2002, the team was taken over by French car maker Renault, who added to their immense heritage in motorsport by clinching the world championship with Fernando Alonso in 2005 and 2006.
After the departure of top team personnel in 2010, Renault ceased to be team owners and it was taken over by Luxembourg financial company Genii Capital. Renault continues to have a key role as engine supplier with the team utilising the same turbo hybrid power units as Red Bull and Toro Rosso.