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Lotus adamant financial issues are not terminal

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Lotus F1 Team CEO Matthew Carter is adamant that the financial issues currently blighting the team are not terminal and that it will be racing in Singapore later this month.

Uncertainty surrounding Lotus’ financial status has come to a head in recent weeks amid talks with French manufacturer Renault about a possible buy-out.

The team was threatened with having its trucks impounded due to legal action from former reserve driver Charles Pic over the Belgian Grand Prix weekend, and reportedly is waiting on a payment from Venezuelan oil giant PDVSA, the backer of driver Pastor Maldonado.

Speaking at last weekend’s Italian Grand Prix, Carter made no secret of Lotus’ financial difficulties, but was adamant that the team would not only race in Singapore on September 20 but also complete the remainder of the season.

“I can guarantee you that we’ll be at Singapore,” Carter said. “One of our sea-freight containers has left, our airfreight will leave next week. We will be in Singapore.

“The financial issues are all over the press, everyone is aware of them. We’re working as hard as we can behind the scenes to get them sorted out. None of them have become terminal, obviously. We’re still here, we’re still racing and we will continue to do that.”

Carter confirmed that negotiations with Renault were still ongoing, but maintained that its support was not the only option for the team to secure a long-term future in the sport.

“The negotiations that were referred to earlier on [with Renault] are going on behind the scenes. I’m hopeful that’s going to secure our future one way or the other going forward.

“And when I say one way or the other it just means we have more than one option going forward to secure the future of the team.

“As far as the race of the races this season, we have a budget in place and we will operate to that budget and will be at all the races.”

Andretti United team names drivers for inaugural Extreme E season

Extreme E drivers Andretti
Extreme E
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The Extreme E team formed by Andretti Autosport and United Autosports named Catie Munnings and Timmy Hansen as its drivers Monday for the series’ inaugural 2021 season.

Munnings is a successful veteran of rally series. Hansen is a past winner and champion in the World Rallycross Championship.

They both will race in the environmentally conscious electric SUV series that will hold events in five areas around the world that are threatened by climate change. Chip Ganassi Racing and six-time Formula One champion Lewis Hamilton also are fielding cars in Extreme E, which will feature male and female co-drivers on every team.

Catie Munnings

“I’m so excited to join Andretti United Extreme E,” Munnings said in a release. ““I was really intrigued when I first heard about Extreme E, I just knew I had to be involved. The male / female racing partnership is a fantastic and exciting new concept. The season has incredible locations and the racing will be very exciting. It will be a new challenge for the teams and drivers, and I’m so thrilled to be working with such a strong team.

“The championship is a really innovative concept, it’s combining motorsport and science and will produce an important legacy in each race location. Bringing the platform that motorsport has in line with the awareness that the planet needs right now is awesome and a really important message.”

Timmy Hansen

Said Hansen: “Going into the Extreme E will be a new chapter in my career, one that I am extremely excited about. It is something brand new, not only for me, but the whole of motorsport. The format is something

we’ve never seen before. I’m also delighted to be able to carry the message of something bigger – talking about the environment and doing something good for the world – that’s something that really drives me. It’s going to be a big adventure in life to see these locations and I’m going to do my best in carrying this responsibility and hopefully making people aware of the challenges we have in the world, together with our passion for racing.”