DECEMBER 24, 2014
Abiteboul hails Renault's Illien tie-up
Renault's F1 chief Cyril Abiteboul has hailed the new collaboration with engine expert Mario Illien.
"It is great that Renault are now working with Ilmor," said Christian Horner, the boss of Renault's works team Red Bull, who in 2014 failed to win the title for the first time since 2009.
Renault faltered badly at the start of the all-new turbo V6 era in 2014, as Mercedes utterly dominated.
So it was significant that, as the 2014 season ended in Abu Dhabi recently, a notable VIP in the Red Bull garage was the multiple title-winning former Mercedes F1 designer Illien.
"Ilmor is a strong company with extensive experience with simular engines used in other series," Abiteboul told France's Auto Hebdo.
He confirmed that Illien's UK based company is now "performing some tasks" on behalf of the Renault F1 project.
"This is very useful in situations where it is necessary to analyse a set of solutions," Abiteboul added.
Another key reason for the Illien alliance, he admitted, is that it is "not so easy to create such a very complex hybrid system in the centre of France".
"We are not in the English 'Motorsport Valley', where in pubs every evening engineers from all over meet over a beer," he added.