Williams: Renault turnaround since team's return to F1 'phenomenal'

Renault's progress since its return to Formula 1 as a factory team has been "a remarkable turnaround", according to Williams deputy principal Claire Williams

Williams: Renault turnaround since team's return to F1 'phenomenal'

The French manufacturer took over the struggling Lotus outfit ahead of the 2016 season, and scored just eight points in its comeback campaign to finish ninth overall.

It improved its tally to 57 points and finished sixth last year, and Renault appears to have made another step for 2018 - with both of its cars finishing in the points in Australia.

Carlos Sainz Jr also set the best lap of the weekend outside of the breakaway three leading teams in the second part of qualifying.

"Renault have definitely done a pretty impressive job - I think they are probably fighting, going to be snapping the heels of the top three," Williams said in Melbourne.

"That's a phenomenal turnaround - to turn around a team in this sport takes a huge amount of hard work and effort.

"And they seem to have done a really good job."

Renault managing director Cyril Abiteboul said earlier this year that "a lack of investment under previous ownership" had left the team lagging nearly a decade behind its rivals when it was taken over by the marque.

Facilities at its Enstone base have since been expanded and new staff have joined - with former FIA man Marcin Budkowski the highest-profile arrival.

Speaking to Autosport, Nico Hulkenberg - who joined the team last year - said the impact of Renault's investment was clear to see.

"You feel it eventually, because it translates into performance," he said.

"But it's a factory team and if they want to get back to the front, that's what they have to do and that's what they are doing.

"This is also what I wanted from the team and what I expect.

"You don't get to the front in Formula 1 just by staying where you are, you need to make progress, you need to invest and you need to work harder than the others to catch up."

He added: "We have a good vision together. We will get closer to the front.

"The question is just how long it will take, I'm pretty sure about that."

shares
comments
Chinese GP F1 tyre choices - Mercedes more conservative than rivals
Previous article

Chinese GP F1 tyre choices - Mercedes more conservative than rivals

Next article

Mercedes explains its F1 engine power mode deployment system

Mercedes explains its F1 engine power mode deployment system
The pioneering pair who brought a new glory era to an F1 heavyweight  Plus

The pioneering pair who brought a new glory era to an F1 heavyweight 

With the team’s founder now retired and a new boss at the helm, change was coming to Brabham – change that would shape the future of Formula 1. In the third part of our four-part history of Brabham, DAMIEN SMITH examines the effect Bernie Ecclestone had on the team

The combination behind the Silverstone racing battles Hamilton called "F1 at its best" Plus

The combination behind the Silverstone racing battles Hamilton called "F1 at its best"

OPINION: The late battling in the British Grand Prix wowed Formula 1 fans and surely represents the best racing action of the season so far. And there was a cocktail of factors that created the action, from which Carlos Sainz emerged as a popular new winner

How Ferrari’s Monaco headache became its Silverstone migraine Plus

How Ferrari’s Monaco headache became its Silverstone migraine

OPINION: Ferrari won the British Grand Prix with Carlos Sainz, but it ultimately cost Charles Leclerc a chance to make a bigger dent in Max Verstappen's title lead by leaving the Monegasque out on old tyres towards the end. Like Monaco, indecision over strategy proved to be the Scuderia's biggest issue - and if the team doesn't reflect, the headache can only intensify

Formula 1
Jul 5, 2022
The five factors behind Sainz winning a British GP he’d twice lost Plus

The five factors behind Sainz winning a British GP he’d twice lost

Formula 1 has a newest race winner, in a grand prix the victor appeared to have lost twice, only to charge back to headline a sensational and dramatic British Grand Prix. From a massive start crash to a late sprint finish, here’s how five factors saw Carlos Sainz take his maiden grand prix win

Formula 1
Jul 4, 2022
Why there was no case to answer in Aston’s latest F1 copycat saga Plus

Why there was no case to answer in Aston’s latest F1 copycat saga

The appearance of a revised Aston Martin in Spain caused controversy but PAT SYMONDS explains why the FIA investigation found the Silverstone team had no case to answer

Formula 1
Jul 3, 2022
Why it's Red Bull that really leads a three-way fight so far at Silverstone Plus

Why it's Red Bull that really leads a three-way fight so far at Silverstone

After a slow start to Friday at Silverstone, all the Formula 1 teams had to effectively cram in a day’s worth of practice into one hour. But there was still plenty to learn and while Ferrari topped the times, a three-way battle is brewing ahead of the British Grand Prix

Formula 1
Jul 2, 2022
Why the future is bright for the British GP Plus

Why the future is bright for the British GP

It wasn’t so long ago the situation looked bleak at Silverstone with the future of the British Grand Prix under threat. But a transformation has seen it restored to one of the most important races on the Formula 1 calendar, with bigger and better to come

Formula 1
Jul 1, 2022
Could mixed fortunes for F1's leading Brits turn around at Silverstone? Plus

Could mixed fortunes for F1's leading Brits turn around at Silverstone?

For the first time in many years, none of the local racers starts among the favourites for the British Grand Prix. But George Russell, Lewis Hamilton and Lando Norris could have reasons for optimism

Formula 1
Jun 30, 2022