APRIL 18, 2015
Chairman Ghosn approves F1 revival for Renault
Carlos Ghosn, the chairman and CEO of Renault, has reportedly green-lighted a major push for the French carmaker to bounce back in formula one.
Mere weeks ago, the marque's F1 boss, Cyril Abiteboul, admitted that after a tumultuous start to the turbo V6 era, the carmaker is considering its options for the future -- which could include pulling out of the sport.
But Auto Motor und Sport reports that Ghosn chaired a 'crisis meeting' in Paris in recent days and decided that rather than quit F1, Renault "must return to winning ways".
The reaction may go some way to appeasing Renault's works F1 partner Red Bull, whose alarm with the situation only grew in China a week ago when French-made 'power units' were failing left, right and centre.
"The first step has been taken," team official Dr Helmut Marko, referring to Renault's engine crisis, told Brazil's Globo Esporte.
"After the disaster of China, Renault recognised its responsibility. Now let's see what they can do," the Austrian added.
"Ferrari understood its difficulties with the engine last year and started early on building a new one. They did a great job. This was not the case with Renault," said Marko.
"Let's see how much Renault will move forward now. How much they want to invest will also be important.
"For our part, we will debut a very different version of the car in Spain, which Adrian Newey has concentrated great effort on. But I repeat that we are dependent on the power unit of Renault," he insisted.
So for now, Marko said, Red Bull's quit threat stands.
"Yes," he confirmed. "If in the medium term we continue to just watch the others fighting for victory and cannot do anything about it, then what's the point of remaining in F1?"
Marko said the rules themselves also need to be urgently looked it.
"For the good of F1," he insisted, "something fundamental so that the differences between the power units is not as great as it is today should be done. It's destroying our sport.
"There was a time when we had an FIA president who saw the importance of this balance," Marko added.