Force India team boss Vijay Mallya insists that Mark Smith isn't heading anywhere – for now at least – with the team's technical chief set to stay in his post until next year.
Rivals Lotus announced last week that Smith was one of three Force India team members set to make the switch [See separate story HERE
], with the announcement coming on the same day that Force India confirmed legal action against the F1 newcomers and Aerolab for a breach of intellectual property.
However, Mallya has now revealed that Smith will stay in his position until April next year and insisted that changes away from the circuit wouldn't affect performance on track.
“We are fully focused on the task in hand, which is to score as many points as we can and to regain that fifth position in the championship,” he said. “We're not so far away from Renault and there are plenty of opportunities left to rack points up and some circuits that we should really fly on, including Montreal.
“Any actions we're taking away from the track won't affect the team's focus on sealing our most successful season to date. Our technical team, despite reports, is still very much intact - Mark [Smith] will stay with us until April 2011 and we will, in due course, announce a structure that will take us to the next level of performance.
“I'm very comfortable with where we are as a team and where we are going. The structure and any off track events are for me to worry about, so the team can get on with doing what they do best at the track.”