Renault’s Cyril Abiteboul: “We want Hulkenberg to come in and impress”

Credit: Octane Photographic Ltd.

Cyril Abiteboul confirms the targets set out by Renault Sport Formula 1 Team with them wanting Nico Hulkenberg to come in and impress and Jolyon Palmer to improve during the 2017 Formula 1 season.

The Enstone-based outfit endured a challenging return last season, after taking over Lotus F1 Team at the end of 2015. Palmer was promoted to a race seat as Romain Grosjean moved to Haas F1 Team and he was joined by Kevin Magnussen. They finished the season in ninth with a total of eight points, ahead of only Sauber F1 Team and Manor Racing MRT.

Palmer steadily improved over the course of the season, and despite only one point to his name, it was decided he would be retained for this season. Even though Magnussen scored the other seven points, the Dane was released to join Haas, with Hulkenberg replacing him from Sahara Force India F1 Team. Hulkenberg has had a good career but has yet to reach the podium despite 115 starts.

Abiteboul confirmed that they want Hulkenberg to come to Renault and impress them, with Palmer continuing his progress from his rookie campaign. With this driver line-up Renault’s goal is improve their position in the Constructors’ Standings.

“We want Hulkenberg to come in and impress, while we expect progress from Palmer,” Abiteboul told French publication Auto Plus. “Our goal is to improve our position in the Constructors’ standings.

“On the chassis side, we need to show better performance right away and keep tabs on our development rate. We must go faster. On the engine front, we need to confirm and build on what we did last year.

“We have gone for a new and aggressive design, but we have to run a reliable and more competitive package all year long. We’ll be able to measure our progress thanks to our valuable partnership with Red Bull, which will serve as a good yardstick for us.”