Honda F1's Nick Fry said that the team are looking forward to the arrival of Loic Bigois as the new head of a reorganised aerodynamics department.
Fry told autosport.com that Bigois, who was recruited from Williams where he served as chief aerodynamicist, is the most senior of a number of recent staff appointments made by Honda as the team work towards becoming more competitive.
"Loic will be a great appointment, because he has got a lot of experience, he has been in Formula One a long time, and he probably hasn't had the opportunity to show what he can do because he has always been with teams with relatively restricted budgets," Fry said.
"So we're very hopeful. The only thing that is yet to be sorted out is his start date. He's on gardening leave at the moment, so we've got some negotiations to do with Williams."
Honda have made major investments in aerodynamic in the past 12 months, including the addition of a second wind tunnel late in 2006 and a ramping up of its CFD department.
In order to make things more manageable, Fry said that the department has been divided into three separate areas, for which Bigois will take overall responsibility.
"We've reshuffled a little bit," he said. "Since we launched the second windtunnel last year, Mariano Alperin-Bruvera, who is the chief aerodynamicist, has had to do not only the creative side of the aero department, but also run what is now a department of more than 100 people. And that includes CFD, and it includes the operation of the windtunnel.
"So we'll reshuffle it slightly. It sounds, in fact, remarkably similar to what Renault have done; ie. Loic will be the head of aerodynamics, and then underneath him he will have three fairly big deparments: the operations, the actual running of the windtunnel, the model making, all the things that support it; the aerodynamics, which Mariano will look after, and the CFD.
"What we're doing is what BMW and Renault have done in terms of major investment in CFD capacity, so all the team's aero is just becoming a very large department within the company, and it needs to be split up a bit."
Fry hopes that the fact that Bigois and Alperin-Bruvera have worked together previously will be an added bonus for the team.
"One of the nice things is that Mariano and Loic worked together before at Minardi, so they know each other well, they get along with each other well, and they respect each other," he said.
"You've got to find something that fits together, and hopefully by trading on people's existing relationships, we've done that."
While further appointments at Honda are on the cards, Fry was not keen to be drawn on any details.
"I was asked on TV yesterday whether I could speak about further engineering appointments underneath [Technical Director] Mr Nakamoto, and I said I could not," he said.
"But there will be further reinforcements in other areas."