Two F1 names now in charge at Hyundai

Just as Aston Martin and Honda team up in Formula 1 for the future, another manufacturer not already on the grid is also attracting attention.

Former Renault team boss Cyril Abiteboul is now in charge of Hyundai’s world rally program, although until now he has played down the possibility of the South Korean carmaker entering F1.

“My contribution is not to make comparisons with Formula 1 because they are so different,” the Frenchman told the Spanish sports newspaper AS this week.

“Both are motorsport disciplines, but in Formula 1 you try to have everything under control and in rallies there are many things that cannot be controlled,” he added.

“The interactions between team members and drivers are also different,” Abiteboul, 45, said.

“I spent 15 years in Formula 1 and I wanted to continue in this sport, but with something new and this was a perfect path.”

Now, it emerges that Hyundai has snapped up well-known engineer Francois-Xavier Demaison – another Frenchman who was ousted from Formula 1 recently.

Demaison left his role as Williams technical director at the end of last year along with team boss Jost Capito – and he will now be technical boss at Abiteboul-led Hyundai Motorsport.

“His extensive experience and accomplishments will prove invaluable as we strive to establish ourselves as the benchmark in our motorsport programs,” said team president Sean Kim.

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