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Battle to emerge over Lotus rights?

Battle set to emerge over the rights to use the Team Lotus name
A fight for the rights to use the Lotus name in various forms of motorsport could be looming between three parties interested in using the name.

Speculation has suggested that Lotus Racing boss Tony Fernandes had purchased the rights to use the Team Lotus name from David Hunt and that an announcement will be made this weekend in Singapore – where the team is also expected to confirm that it will run with Renault engines in 2011.

However, a report by Speed TV has revealed that Group Lotus – a separate entity from the race team – put an application before the Intellectual Property Office back in July to use the name for a range of activities, while Team Lotus Ventures – Hunt's business – did similar last month.

The revelation comes on the back of an interesting development in GP2, following the release of the teams to have secured an entry into the sport for the three-year period starting in 2011.

Fernandes has secured an entry with Team AirAsia will provide the latest link between the Lotus F1 programme and the Junior Formulae, with Lotus Racing-backed outfits also competing in both the Renault World Series and British F3.

However, Group Lotus will also have involvement in the series – and in GP3 – having entered into a partnership with leading team ART, which will see the team run as Lotus ART in 2011.

With Group Lotus seeking to expand its motorsport activities, having already started to back Takuma Sato in the IndyCar Series, it remains to be seen who will secure the rights to use the Team Lotus name.

What does seem certain however is that Team Lotus is unlikely to feature in an F1 announcement this weekend.



Related Pictures

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Saturday Practice, Jarno Trulli (ITA), Lotus Racing, T127
Saturday Practice, Jarno Trulli (ITA), Lotus Racing, T127
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(L to R): Esteban Ocon (FRA) Sahara Force India F1 Team with team mate Sergio Perez (MEX) Sahara Force India F1 and the Sahara Force India F1 VJM10.
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(L to R): Sergio Perez (MEX) Sahara Force India F1 with Alfonso Celis Jr (MEX) Sahara Force India F1 Development Driver and Esteban Ocon (FRA) Sahara Force India F1 Team.
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(L to R): Andrew Green (GBR) Sahara Force India F1 Team Technical Director; Sergio Perez (MEX) Sahara Force India F1; Dr. Vijay Mallya (IND) Sahara Force India F1 Team Owner; Esteban Ocon (FRA) Sahara Force India F1 Team; Robert Fernley (GBR) Sahara Force India F1 Team Deputy Team Principal, and the Sahara Force India F1 VJM10.
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(L to R): Dr. Vijay Mallya (IND) Sahara Force India F1 Team Owner with Sergio Perez (MEX) Sahara Force India F1 and Esteban Ocon (FRA) Sahara Force India F1 Team.
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(L to R): Alfonso Celis Jr (MEX) Sahara Force India F1 Development Driver; Sergio Perez (MEX) Sahara Force India F1; Dr. Vijay Mallya (IND) Sahara Force India F1 Team Owner; Alfonso Celis Jr (MEX) Sahara Force India F1 Development Driver, with the Sahara Force India F1 VJM10.
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(L to R): Sergio Perez (MEX) Sahara Force India F1; Dr. Vijay Mallya (IND) Sahara Force India F1 Team Owner; Esteban Ocon (FRA) Sahara Force India F1 Team, with the Sahara Force India F1 VJM10.
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(L to R): Sergio Perez (MEX) Sahara Force India F1 with team mate Esteban Ocon (FRA) Sahara Force India F1 Team and the Sahara Force India F1 VJM10.
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Sergio Perez (MEX) Sahara Force India F1 and Esteban Ocon (FRA) Sahara Force India F1 Team unveil the Sahara Force India F1 VJM10.
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Sergio Perez (MEX) Sahara Force India F1 and Esteban Ocon (FRA) Sahara Force India F1 Team unveil the Sahara Force India F1 VJM10.
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(L to R): Esteban Ocon (FRA) Sahara Force India F1 Team with Otmar Szafnauer (USA) Sahara Force India F1 Chief Operating Officer.
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Esteban Ocon (FRA) Sahara Force India F1 Team.
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Dr. Vijay Mallya (IND) Sahara Force India F1 Team Owner.
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Andrew Green (GBR) Sahara Force India F1 Team Technical Director.
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DTGM - Unregistered

September 23, 2010 3:02 PM

Of course they do. If they bought the rights to "Team Lotus" from David Hunt then they can use "Team Lotus". If group lotus wants to race under group lotus then they can do that as well. Further if Lotus cars wants to race as lotus cars they will do that. The bottom line is that with all three doing it it will muddy the brand for each. With Team Lotus already using the name in racing they will have the strongest claim to it, unless the ownership that David Hunt had is questionable.



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