Lotus Racing chief executive Riad Asmat has revealed that an argument over the production of t-shirts was behind Group Lotus electing to terminate the naming licence for the F1 team owned by Tony Fernandes.
Group Lotus will withdraw its sponsorship of the team and owners Proton have insisted that the team has no right to use the Team Lotus name in 2011, which the team said it planned to do during the Singapore Grand Prix weekend.
A statement from Lotus Racing insisting that it does have the right to the name revealed that a number of trivial points were behind the decision by Proton to terminate the naming licence with Asmat expanding on those points in an interview with MediaCorp
"Initially there was good cooperation but then issues cropped up after that and it came to a point where they said we were detrimental to their brand and infringed their rights," he said. "One of these was about producing t-shirts, which we were told did not follow correct procedures and they terminated our agreement about two weeks ago."
Lotus Racing is set to launch High Court action to show it has the rights to use Team Lotus, with the move being crucial due to the fact that not being called Lotus 'puts livelihoods at risk'.