The recent weeks have been busy as the F1 teams are going through a phase of nicking one another’s best people.
This happens all the time, but there has been a big push in recent months as the team prepare for the big changes that are coming in 2014, with new engine regulations.
What generally happens is that teams that have been doing better than they should be are pillaged for talent by the bigger operations, although it is often difficult to know exactly who to hire!
Ferrari has been struggling with its aerodynamics in recent years and the arrival of Lotus’s James Allison this summer resulted in the team making a bid to get hold of the Lotus chief aerodynamicist Dirk de Beer.
At the same time (oddly) Lotus was busy recruiting Ferrari’s head of aerodynamics France’s Nicolas Hennel de Beaupreau, who started out with the Enstone team before having stints at McLaren and Ferrari.
The switch was particularly interesting as the two teams found themselves in what they call a “hostage situation”, with both teams not wanting to let go of their man without him serving his six months of gardening leave, in order to lessen the amount of technical knowledge he could take with him.