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Abiteboul says Ricciardo will help them cut the gap to the top 3 teams

  • Published on 02 Feb 2019 19:34
  • comments 3
  • By: Richard Fletcher

Cyril Abiteboul, the managing director of Renault F1 has said that the signing of Daniel Ricciardo will help them close the gap to the top three teams, Ferrari, Mercedes and Red Bull. He said that the decision to sign Daniel will bring the top three teams into reach closer than would have been possible otherwise.

Abiteboul admitted that it would be unlikely that Renault would be challenging for victories during 2019 but that signing Ricciardo would keep them on course to be at the front of the grid for the 2020 season.

"I don't see us suddenly in a position to fight for wins or fight for the championship, but it will increase the chances to stick to the road map. Daniel has increased our chances to stick to the road map, which is to fight for wins by 2020." 

Renault have previously said that they are now gearing up to push for podiums and to challenge the front runners for victories. Abiteboul explained that to achieve this would take time regardless of the teams budget or size.

"We are not limited by finance, we are not limited by budget. What is limiting us is time. Anyone who knows enough about F1 appreciates that the gap we have to the top teams will take some time to be absorbed."

Abiteboul added: "One thing that Daniel should help us is compress that time, because suddenly everyone is more interested in Renault."

He insisted that Ricciardo had not been lured to Renault with the promise of instant wins: "That is not what we told him, and he has been clear about that too. Daniel is a way to fast track that scarcest resource we have, which is time."

Replies (3)

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  • boudy

    Posts: 1,168

    Make no mistake $35 Mil per year for Ricciardo sends out the message how serious Renault is. They will improve but not just because of Ricciardo but the investment into their PU factory and design.
    Not sure if they will be able to gain on the top 3 let alone keep Alfa Romeo behind or an RBR lookalike.

    • + 0
    • Feb 2 2019 - 21:48
  • blade

    Posts: 341

    I still cant believe the salary for RIC tbh. Makes him even higher paid the VER right? Might just be me and stand to be shot down on this but he isn't worth this money unless he's winning a WDC - he isn't going to be doing that in a Renault in the next 3 years. Drivers make up tenths, not whole seconds.

    • + 0
    • Feb 4 2019 - 12:40
    • boudy

      Posts: 1,168

      There seem to be some conflicting reports on his salary. Another source quotes $17M. Anyway in pure outright payment it seems higher but I don't know how much other sponsorships either driver has. I believe they would be around the same level. Ricciardo is an classy driver and deserves his place in F1 and we will see if his choice to join Renault was the correct call, not on RBR performance but if he can move Renault forwards. Verstappen seems to have the edge on him which was shown in most races last year which most likely the reason why he wanted an change.

      The facts are that if an driver is 0.4seconds per lap faster than any other given driver by the end of the race (45 laps example) they would be 18 seconds in front, if there other drivers are between these drivers than the time increases because of trailing another driver so its not just how much faster they are but also how many other drivers are between the drivers.

      Paying for the best driver makes sense from that point of view since it gives you an immediate improvement in performance.

      So if Renault can afford it they are correct, if the $$$ came from the funds for developments than they might have been better off investing in that but only if Ricciardo doesn't deliver.

      • + 0
      • Feb 5 2019 - 16:02

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