Technical reshuffle at Benetton

THE long-awaited reshuffle of engineers at Benetton Formula happened last week with the resignation of chief designer Nick Wirth and the announcement that Wirth deputy Sergio Rinland is to join Sauber. Wirth will be replaced as Benetton's chief designer by Tim Densham, who joined the team a couple of months ago having been left in the lurch by the closure of Honda Racing Developments. He will be supported in this role by designer Chris Radage and aerodynamicist Ben Agathangelou. There are expected to be changes right through the design staff with the team advertising for aerodynamicists, computational fluid dynamicists and vehicle dynamics engineers.

Densham has been involved in Formula 1 for 20 years, having joined Team Lotus from Rolls Royce Motors in 1979. After a period in the design office he engineered Elio de Angelis, Johnny Dumfries and Satoru Nakajima before being put in charge of research and development. He moved to Brabham in 1990 and became chief designer briefly before the team closed down and he moved on to Tyrrell where he worked with Harvey Postlethwaite and Mike Gascoyne. In 1998 he left the team and joined the secret Honda design team - playing an important role in the work on the Honda prototype chassis which was tested last year.

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