F1: Renault stays on grid – but Prodrive misses out

By LJ Hutchins

CalendarWednesday, December 16th, 2009

 
 

Renault’s Oxfordshire-based F1 team has announced it will be on the 2010 grid after selling “a large stake” to a Luxembourg-based investment firm.

According to the team’s statement this morning, it will “retain its name, its identity and the core ingredients that led to the successes achieved in 2005 and 2006” as well as respecting its commitment to its Enstone employees.

It continues: “The team will continue to be supplied with engines by its sister company in Viry-Châtillon, which is also pleased to have received a renewed commitment from Red Bull Racing for the 2010 season.”

But the announcement also means that yet another attempt by Prodrive to join the F1 grid, after the company was reportedly Genii Capital’s major competition to acquire the team, has come to nothing.

Renault said its decision was based on the fact that Formula One remains one of the world’s biggest sporting spectacles in terms of television audiences and media exposure. It also said that the recently-agreed cost-cutting measures played a big part in its decision.

It added: “Renault therefore believes that the impact of Formula One in terms of image, and brand awareness worldwide, particularly in new, emerging markets, will continue to play a key role in fulfilling the company’s growth objectives in years ahead.”

Bernard Rey, Renault F1 Team President, said: “I am delighted to welcome Genii Capital as our new strategic partner as I am sure that their enthusiasm and business expertise will create a new dynamic for the team, the staff and our partners.

“Altogether, we look forward to competing again at the highest level in Formula One. Today’s announcement also confirms Renault’s commitment and trust in the sport’s governing bodies to improve the green credentials of Formula One.”

“With the ongoing evolutions of the Formula One regulations, Renault will be able to entertain its fans, while promoting a leaner and sounder Championship. We will show Renault’s skill when it comes to developing high-performance, fuel-efficient cars.”

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