Fernandes to eventually step down as Caterham boss

Tony Fernandes (MAL) Caterham Team Principal. Formula One World Championship, Rd14, Singapore Grand Prix, Practice, Marina Bay Street Circuit, Singapore, Friday 21 September 2012.Sep.22 (GMM) Caterham team owner Tony Fernandes has revealed that the team’s latest high profile recruit could “eventually” take over as boss.

The team announced on Friday that Cyril Abiteboul, until now the deputy managing director at engine supplier Renault, has signed up as Caterham’s chief executive.

For now, Fernandes remains in charge. But the Malaysian entrepreneur admitted on Friday that he is “not as involved” in the team as he could be, hence Abiteboul’s appointment.

Fernandes also runs his airline AirAsia, the leisure group Tune, and is the chairman of his English football club Queens Park Rangers.

“I am not as involved [in F1] so the team needs leadership,” Fernandes said in Singapore.

“Cyril has been someone that I’ve courted for a while and we’ve finally persuaded him, with Renault’s blessing, to come over to Caterham.”

Asked whether Abiteboul is now Caterham’s new team principal, Fernandes answered: “Not at the moment, no.

“I will still remain in that job for a while… Eventually, maybe [Abiteboul will become team principal].”

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