Renault deal would resurrect top form - Lotus

A tie-up between Renault and Lotus to create a new Formula 1 works outfit would result in a new era of competitiveness for both engine manufacturer and team, reckons deputy team principal Federico Gastaldi.

Renault deal would resurrect top form - Lotus
Pastor Maldonado, Lotus F1 E23
Vitaly Petrov, Renault F1 Team
Pastor Maldonado, Lotus F1 E23
Federico Gastaldi, Lotus F1 Team Deputy Team Principal
Vitaly Petrov, Renault F1 Team
Riccardo Patrese, in the Renault RE50 at the Legends Parade
Robert Kubica, Renault F1 Team leads Rubens Barrichello, Williams F1 Team
Vitaly Petrov, Renault F1 Team
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Renault is currently evaluating its options in F1, and is seriously considering a takeover of the Enstone-based Lotus team so it can return with its own squad for 2017.

A decision about the plans is expected imminently, with an announcement set to be made over the next few weeks.

Return to the front

Although both Renault and Lotus have not enjoyed their most competitive form since the new turbo regulations came in, Gastaldi is convinced the situation for both of them would change if an alliance was forged.

"As I kept saying from last year when people were asking – the first one interested in having good results is Renault itself," Gastaldi told Motorsport.com.

"It is a multi national company with lots of history, not only as a car manufacturer but also in motor racing itself. It has had a great deal of results in different formulas.

"What happened last year [with engine struggles] unfortunately also happened to Ferrari.

"Mercedes has done a better job than all of us, that is not in dispute, but I am sure if they [Renault] made the decision [to commit with Lotus], then they have the right people to sort it out.

"They just need to push the button to make it happen.

"It may take a longer or shorter time, but they will come back [to the front] for sure, with or without us. We know they can do it."

Untapped potential

Lotus has faced some difficult times over the past two seasons as F1's tough financial climate has resulted in a limited development budget.

Gastaldi has no doubts, however, that the potential that helped the team fight for wins as recently as 2013 is still there, and would be unlocked by a cash injection from new owners.

"Obviously if we have a bigger pockets, it will be easier to look for new development investment," he said.

"Probably we can improve also by bringing back some people who left. For us, it would be fantastic if Renault comes back.

"When they started thinking about it, and it came out in the open that they were trying to come back, first it was Red Bull, then they talk about Sauber, Force India and us – and now they are talking to us. We are very happy about.

"If they do decide to come back, for us it would be a mega plus. Having Renault back is a no-brainer. But if they don't come, we have to keep pushing in our own direction."

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