Renault RS16 livery, 2016

Podium finishes ‘three or four years away’ – Renault

2016 F1 seasonPosted on Author Keith Collantine

Renault is describing its return to F1 in 2016 as a “transition” and does not expect to be competing for podiums for at least three years.

Renault Sport Racing president Jerome Stroll said the team has a lot of work to do rebuilding the infrastructure of its twin-site F1 operation in Enstone and Viry-Chatillon.

“2016 will be a very specific year because we have to set back all the organisation that used to be,” he explained. “Renault has been involved in the supply of engine only, not being a team, and now we have to reconcile and set up the new organisation between Enstone in the UK and Viry in France and to make this organisation work more efficiently and having the synergy of both organisations.”

“At the end of the day [we have] to prepare the roadmap that we have in mind which is to be in the podium after three or four years. So 2016 will be a year of transition where we have to prepare our future.”

Racing managing director Cyril Abiteboul emphasised the team must be “realistic” about its aims for the year ahead.

“In some areas we are playing catch-up – it’s no secret that we missed the start of the new power unit regulations and Enstone needs a bit of TLC.”

“This is a year to re-build relations, re-energise both Enstone and Viry and create synergies within the Renault Sport Racing group and the wider Renault-Nissan Alliance. That’s not to say that we will write off the year, but we are aiming to put everything in place for improved success in 2017.”

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18 comments on “Podium finishes ‘three or four years away’ – Renault”

  1. Sounds quite realistic, down right conservative even. I know 2014 was a disaster, but you have to go back to 2002 for a year Enstone haven’t managed a podium.

    I really hope Renault become a serious competitor. We could be looking at a situation in around 3 years time with Mercedes, Ferrari, Red Bull, McLaren and Renault all being seriously competitive. What that needs to take place though, is stable rules. Just seriously, leave them alone. Let them find performance progressively and naturally, no upheavals, just let it work itself out!

    1. Well said on the rules.

      As for expectations honesty is the best policy. McLaren could learn from this, depending on how this seasons go possibly Ferrari as well.

    2. I’d go further and say that it’s worryingly conservative. I understand not expecting podiums in the first year, but are they not planning to start making major upgrades even by the second year?

      Ever since the takeover talks started and stalled multiple times, there’s been an air of doing it on the cheap from Renault. Even dumping Pastor was all about his sponsor’s financial predicament rather than saying pay drivers have no place in a works team. Hopefully I’m wrong, as it’s pointless for a car manufacturer to have a full factory team in any sport content to just make up the numbers, that’s worse than no marketing presence at all.

      1. Maybe they are just underpaying themselves and not setting unrealistic expectations. Look at high Mclaren Honda got everyone’s hopes up, just to crash and burn in the most laughable way. They are now the laughing stock of the paddock, and even their drivers throw jabs at their ridiculous performance.

        I think it’s smart to keep expectations slightly especially since the Enstone squad has had to deal with two different engine suppliers over the past 2 seasons. There have been exits by quite a few key personnel as well.

        I would be surprised if the end of 2017 they don’t have at least one podium in the bag.

    3. What that needs to take place though, is stable rules.

      What’s needed are stable rules which permit development. Stable rules which inhibit development, which is what we have, merely serve to lock in one teams dominance.

      We could be looking at a situation in around 3 years time with Mercedes, Ferrari, Red Bull, McLaren and Renault all being seriously competitive.

      At which point Mercedes and Hamilton will have pulled off a period of dominance which will make Ferrari in 2000-2004 seem closely competitive. But for some people that’s a feature rather than a bug.

      1. They’ve got unlimited chassis development already. Granted limited wind tunnel and track testing which I don’t completely agree should be as restricted as it is, but the opportunity is there for the chassis, I’m pretty sure Red Bull are already on terms with Mercedes, McLaren are on track to be, and with Allison bedded in at Ferrari I’m faith in them as well.

        Engine development is badly restricted, I think we’ve pretty much already seen Ferrari catch up though and it’s too early to write Honda off.

        It’s also too early to write Ferrari off for this year, I’m expecting Mercedes to still win this year, but I think they’ll have a fight on their hands.

        I do agree testing and development should be opened up. ‘Cost saving’ is useless if you don’t have performance. I’m sure Honda would have sooner pumped money into the problem rather than be stuck with the shambles of a power unit they ended up with last year.

        Ultimately the best team should be winning, I don’t think there is something wrong with F1 because Mercedes are winning, it’s up to other teams to get on terms with them rather than play musical rules to see he gets the jump on the next upheaval.

  2. And what makes them think Merc, Red Bull, Ferrari will be less competitive than them at that time ?

    1. Who said they think that? Also its not Binary. For them to be on the podium does not mean that others have to be going backwards, it means they have got up there and can fight for it.

      You need to read what is there and not what you think it is saying.

      1. So you’re saying the other teams won’t start sucking but Renault will start kicking butt. Sounds like a far cry considering how Red Bull and McLaren faring given their resources.

        1. @texasisbiggerthanfrance So you’re saying that Wayne thinks any team with decent resources can just go in with a Cosworth DFV having won a political war and be competitive?

  3. How long until they start trying to rig race results again, though?

    1. Arh, but they don’t have Briatore with them anymore:-)

      1. Nope, but it was hardly Briatore alone. There was a culture of cheating in that team, and effectively it remains the same team — admittedly, with more than a few personnel changes. Still, I’d expect some vestiges of that culture to remain.

        But then I guess it’s better than Williams, who’ve gone out of their way to hire anyone who’s been caught cheating, or at least that’s how it seems. (See: Mike Coughlan and Pat Symonds.)

        1. There was no culture of cheating without Briatore. You probably talk about all their tricks as Benetton but you forget that Briatore was the one charge back then too. Briatore did everything.
          If you knew the guy a little you will realize that his a slime ball and was the motivational factor behind such things.

  4. Lotus were the worst Mercedes powered team in 2015, and unless Renault have made enormous leaps in both that’d engine and chassis department, I fully expect them to be in the bottom half of the field in 2016. Unlike McLaren-Honda, their drivers aren’t anything special either. To be honest, other than the knowledge that Enstone is financially secure, this “return” of Renault has done absolutely nothing to me, it has made zero difference. They at least could have done something with the chassis, but even that wasn’t meant to be.

  5. Well said guys. They set themself conservative targets. I like humble people who promiss little and then overdeliver. It is a good reputation to have.

    Just think McHonda planning podiums in 2015…. C c c. Humble podium is way better than bashful fail.

    1. At least Renault isn’t overspending on the driver pay budget totally in vain, like McHonda so painfully have done. It will be very interesting to see what will happen here – How will Renault be able to improve? – will they outperform McHonda in 2016 and how will it go for RBR, now that Renault has reasons to direct their engine development more after their own team?

  6. They will get a podium finish in 2016. K-Mag in Hungary ;-)

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