JULY 27, 2015
Renault racing towards future without Red Bull
Renault appears to be charging towards a future without Red Bull.
With the French carmaker's next move a hot topic in the Hungaroring paddock, boss Cyril Abiteboul fired a barb at its ever-complaining team partner.
"When we read that Red Bull loses money with Renault, that (comment) is completely unacceptable," he told RMC Sport.
"Combining all the money they were paid directly, the amounts that Total paid to them and Infiniti paid to them, as well as prize funds, we are talking about half a billion euros," said Abiteboul.
And suddenly, both Renault and the Enstone team Lotus are openly admitting that talks about a new works alliance are taking place.
Indeed, the pieces of the puzzle seem now to be falling into place.
L'Equipe reports that Renault has decided to pull its support from the Formula Renault 3.5 category; a highly-regarded series that nonetheless does not have the profile of GP2.
"60 per cent of the current F1 drivers were trained in Formula Renault," said Abiteboul, referring also to the 2.0 litre series, "yet nobody knows. We cannot continue to do everything in isolation."
Reportedly, a final decision about the entire Renault programme, including F1, will be taken in September. Abiteboul admitted there will be a "clarification".
"We have been thinking about our strategy for nearly a year," said Abiteboul.
He admitted that buying Lotus "is one of the opportunities we are considering", but said Renault is also determined "not to repeat past mistakes".