Renault personnel begin work at Lotus F1 team's Enstone base

Renault personnel have already started to integrate themselves back at Enstone ahead of the return of its works team to Formula 1 next season, Autosport can reveal

Renault personnel begin work at Lotus F1 team's Enstone base

Autosport can also confirm that after resigning a fortnight ago from his technical consultant role with Manor, Bob Bell is set for an imminent return to Renault as its planned takeover of Lotus continues.

Bell previously worked for Renault at Enstone from 2001-10, primarily as technical director and briefly as acting team principal following the 'crashgate' scandal, prior to joining Mercedes for four seasons from early 2011.

Renault announced after the Japanese Grand Prix five weeks ago its intent to take a majority shareholding in Lotus so it could return to factory team status rather than being purely an engine supplier.

Bell's appointment is part of a recruitment drive as Renault slowly completes a buy-out that is expected to be concluded over the next few weeks.

Speaking to Autosport about recent progress, Lotus deputy team principal Federico Gastaldi said: "There were a number of meetings that took place right after Singapore.

"We had various people [from Renault] coming across to Enstone and meeting with our people.

"They sent people across to help us continue the development of next season's car, and we've had marketing and administration people, to finish off bits and pieces and to keep us moving."

As for the day when Lotus officially becomes Renault again, Gastaldi added: "Renault is one of the biggest car manufacturers in the world, and there are procedures.

"They have been through the due diligence process, the [Lotus] board accepted and now they are on board already, working, pushing.

"It's an ongoing situation, and I can understand when people keep asking 'Why is it [the deal] not done yet?'

"The reason is we cannot dance faster than the music. We have to be patient and go with what is happening."

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