Perhaps fuelling more bad blood in the simmering rivalry between Force India and Lotus, the former is now claiming that the exodus of its chief technical staff members to Lotus was down to the promise of better salaries by the Tony Fernandes owned squad.

At least, that’s the claim from Otmar Szafnauer, Force India’s Chief Operating Officer.

Shortly following the promotion of Mark Smith to replace the Sauber-bound Technical Director James Key, it was then announced that Smith had been headhunted to Lotus Tony Fernandesfor next season, alongside the team’s Chief Designer, Lewis Butler and the Head of Aerodynamics, Marianne Hinson.

Speaking with Germany’s Auto Motor und Sport, Szafnauer is quoted: “Lotus has double the salary. We weren’t prepared to So you either have to pay more or look for an alternative.”

It is believed that the next appointment to Force India’s Technical Director role will be the laundry lady Andy Green.

[Original image via Zero to Hundred]

Richard Bailey

Editor at RichardsF1.com

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