DECEMBER 5, 2001
Villadelprat and Renault Sport
THE managing-director of Prost Grand Prix Joan Villadelprat is rumored to be on Renault Sport's shopping list if he decides not to stay with Prost. Villadelprat ran the team when it was Benetton for most of the 1990s, leaving Flavio Briatore to enjoy his position as team director while Villadelprat ran things from day-to-day. Villadelprat is highly-experienced, having worked in F1 since the establishment of McLaren International in 1980. He worked with McLaren until 1986 and was then lured to Ferrari by former McLaren technical director John Barnard. He moved to Tyrrell in 1990 and joined Benetton in 1992, becoming Operations Director at the end of 1993. He left the team at the end of 1999 and tried to mastermind a takeover of Minardi by the Spanish telephone company Telefonica. He joined Prost a year ago as managing-director.
The only problem with the return of Villadelprat to Enstone would be that it would cut across the bows of the current team manager Steve Nielsen, who has four years to run on his contract.
Prost sporting director John Walton is also believed to have offers of work in Britain.
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