Key headed to Lotus for Le Mans project

James Key (GBR) BMW Sauber Technical Director. Formula One World Championship, Rd 11, German Grand Prix, Qualifying Day, Hockenheim, Germany, Saturday 24 July 2010.
Sauber Technical Director James Key has made a difference

Feb.7 (GMM) Sauber’s departing technical boss James Key is reportedly headed for Lotus.

On the eve of its 2012 car launch, the Swiss team announced that it will not replace the departing Briton Key, who has accepted an offer to work in the UK.

Auto Motor und Sport said it is rumoured Key is headed for Lotus.

Not the Enstone based F1 team, however, but sponsor Group Lotus’ motor racing programme, including Le Mans.

Sauber managing director Monisha Kaltenborn denied the Hinwil based team cannot afford to replace Key.

“If we look back 20 years, the team have always lacked funds,” she insisted.

Kaltenborn defended the bare look of the 2012 car’s livery.

“We are in negotiation with new partners so I am quite confident our livery will look different by the time we hit the first race,” she said.

As for Key, “For some time both sides had the feeling that things were not working any more, and what has happened is the outcome,” La Gazzetta dello Sport quotes Kaltenborn as saying.