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Renault exploring options outside Hulkenberg for 2020

  • Published on 26 Jun 2019 10:23
  • comments 12
  • By: Fergal Walsh

Renault managing director Cyril Abiteboul admits that the team is looking at options outside of Nico Hulkenberg for the 2020 season.

Hulkenberg joined Renault in 2017 after spending three years with Force India alongside Sergio Perez.

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The German's current contract expires at the end of the current season, while teammate Daniel Ricciardo, who joined this year, has a deal until the end of the 2020 season.

Renault has often highlighted its desire to promote one of its own junior drivers to the senior team in the coming years, and Abiteboul admits that it is keeping its options open for its 2020 line-up.

"Nico’s contract, the initial term is coming to an end at the end of this year but there is some mechanism of options as has been commented on press," Abiteboul said.

"I'm not going to disclose in the details that can kick in, so it’s maybe that we continue our journey with Nico.

"Frankly, Nico has delivered for the team, clearly, and if you look at where we were when, frankly, Fred [Vasseur] actually was leading that process for us.

"Nico joined us and where we are today, it’s crazy and the change to the team, to the buzz, and clearly the drivers are no stranger to that, it’s not just engineers.

"So I think we need to give credit to that but also we need to look at the options, like everyone is doing, like I’m sure Nico is doing.

"So, it’s a long answer to tell you that things are open for him and for us but there is also an option in place so that we can possibly continue our journey together.

"We will see, we’ll see probably after the summer break will be the right time to sit down, discuss it on the basis of fact and desire also.

Three of Renault's juniors are currently competing in Formula 2, with Jack Aitken Guanyu Zhou and Anthoine Hubert all holding positions inside the top seven in the championship.

Replies (12)

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  • Who do they bring in though?

    • + 0
    • Jun 26 2019 - 11:20
    • A rookie, probably. Or maybe Perez or Grosjean. Ocon is another prospect, but I think they'll prioritize their own group of juniors. Regardless, the Hulk would be pretty hard to replace.

      • + 0
      • Jun 26 2019 - 19:15
  • NiyolHuayra

    Posts: 5

    Abiteboul is the first one that should go.

    • + 0
    • Jun 26 2019 - 11:43
  • Renault did a self goal by hiring Ricciardo with a hefty price. They should have spent the money to bring out a better car, before bringing in a top driver into the team ( unless they are confident about 2020 car).

    • + 0
    • Jun 26 2019 - 17:37
    • Bringing Danny Ric onboard looks like it might be paying off. He's pushing the Hulk and moving up the grid.

      • + 0
      • Jun 26 2019 - 18:40
    • I agree with Ram, and would add that Ric is allegedly a pretty good dev driver, so they probably get good data from two good dev drivers right now. Furthermore, better drivers mean more points compared to what they'd get otherwise, which in the long run means more money for Renault to play with. I also think Ric has a sponsor or two in tow. Maybe it was early, but I respect their effort in the driver field.

      • + 0
      • Jun 26 2019 - 19:18
  • xoya

    Posts: 583

    They will probably take Ocon for free and voila! Where does that leave Hulkenberg though?

    • + 0
    • Jun 26 2019 - 18:05
    • Haas?

      • + 0
      • Jun 26 2019 - 19:16
    • xoya

      Posts: 583

      Makes sense. :)
      Grosjean MUST be on his way out.

      • + 0
      • Jun 26 2019 - 21:07
    • Honestly, I think it's about time. He has served his purpose at Haas, it is time to retire before things get embarassing. Haas has great potential, they just need drivers that can last an entire race length. :)

      • + 0
      • Jun 27 2019 - 05:10
  • non story. he's staying imo. The team are on an upward trajectory and why would you change that/now?

    • + 0
    • Jun 26 2019 - 20:53
  • f1ski

    Posts: 726

    Hülkenberg to haas. Should vettel or botas leave he would be great there as well . I think at this stage of Renault’s development t it would be a mistake to make a driver change. They could be as close as mclaren to a break out or it could turn 180* in the wrong direction

    • + 0
    • Jun 27 2019 - 00:07

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