F1: Is Renault selling out to Prodrive?


Renault’s exit plan from F1 competition could involve selling its Enstone operation to Prodrive, according to a report in a French newspaper.

An article in L’Equipe, penned by the wife of a former Renault team director, suggests the team is looking for a way to get out of the sport before 2010.

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It says Prodrive boss David Richards is working with what it calls “a second-order” car manufacturer to acquire the Enstone chassis-building operation and relocate from the company’s present premises in nearby Banbury.

The company already has an association with Aston Martin, with which it has competed very successfully in sportscar racing.

However, Prodrive has refused to comment on the story, saying: “We will make an announcement the day we have something interesting to announce.

“The truth is that Prodrive, whose candidacy was not accepted by the FIA for 2010, will be ready to take part in F1, on the condition of being able to be competitive and that the company be viable.”

It is thought that Renault will continue to supply engines, most likely to Red Bull, but is waiting to see what regulations will cover the 2010 powerplants before making a definite commitment.

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