Team Lotus driver Jarno Trulli is seemingly disaffected by the direction Formula 1 is headed both in terms of the new-for-2011 rules and the ongoing naming rights stoush between Team Lotus and the Lotus-backed Renault F1 concern.
The Italian described the ongoing naming rights row – where carmaker Group Lotus is trying to block Tony Fernandes’ F1 team from using the ‘Team Lotus’ moniker it bought the rights to use – as “surreal and embarrassing” in an interview with the Gazzetta Sportiva newspaper.
”Which is the real one? We don’t know,” he asked, when his opinion on the war of words was queried.
And as for the new rules being brought into the sport for 2011, including the reintroduction of KERS and the use of adjustable front and rear wing flaps to improve overtaking, Trulli was equally unimpressed.
“There are too many new things, from aerodynamics to tyres to KERS,” he lamented. “We talk about saving money but each year the rules change, people don’t understand, it becomes less of a show.”
The veteran of 238 Grands Prix also hinted that he might draw down the curtain on his lengthy career unless Team Lotus can start to make serious headway in 2011. By all accounts, the team (irrespective of what it is called) should do so, armed with Renault engines and the Red Bull rear end on its to-be-launched T128 chassis.
“One [bad] year I can suffer, another one no,” he added. “When I started there was a lot of quality because many constructors tried to get winning drivers.
“Now the budgets of many teams are determined by the sponsorships brought in by drivers,” he added, echoing other drivers’ concerns that the sport had become too attached to drivers with sponsorship backing as opposed to outright talent.
[Original image via The Cahier Archive]