May 15 (GMM) Lotus team owner Gerard Lopez has played down the impact of technical director James Allison’s departure.
So highly rated had Briton Allison become within the F1 paddock, that many insiders believe the 45-year-old would be able to take his pick in terms of choosing his next team.
Lotus has promoted from within – Nick Chester – to replace Allison, so it is feared that Enstone will now struggle to produce as good a car with a budget smaller than F1’s ‘big four’ Red Bull, Ferrari, McLaren and Mercedes.
Lopez told Finland’s Turun Sanomat: “We have known for some time that Allison is leaving, so I don’t think it’s relevant to our performance.
“James is a great guy, an important guy,” he is also quoted by Sporting Life, “but that was more from a coordination point of view.
“When Bob Bell left (for Mercedes), there was panic outside of Enstone, but not with us, and this is the same thing. It’s not going to affect us,” He added.
“Enstone has amazing talent.”