Abiteboul Not Liking Las Vegas-style Finale in Abu Dhabi Battle for Sixth


Credit: Octane Photographic Ltd

Cyril Abiteboul admits he does not like the last race shootout for sixth place in the Constructors’ Championship, comparing the experience to a trip to Las Vegas.

There is a $6.5million difference between finishing sixth in the final standings and seventh, and the Renault Sport Formula 1 Team are currently four points behind Scuderia Toro Rosso, who hold that sixth position heading into the season-ending Abu Dhabi Grand Prix.

Renault holds the grid advantage heading into the race, with Nico Hülkenberg seventh and Carlos Sainz Jr. twelfth, compared to Toro Rosso down in seventeenth and twentieth, but Abiteboul, the team boss of Renault, says he does not want to repeat this situation next season.

“I don’t like that,” said Abiteboul to Motorsport.com. “I’m involved in F1, which is extremely process drive, quality driven, and long-term projects.

“I am not in Las Vegas, so I don’t like that position, and having said that, we need to deal with it, and make sure next year it’s not the same situation.”

Abiteboul feels the honour of finishing sixth in the championship standings will be more important than the financial reward for doing so, and he hopes to leave Abu Dhabi with motivation that everyone can take into the off-season.

“The money is always a factor,” said Abiteboul. “But we are part of the Renault Group, the largest manufacturer in the world.

“Obviously I am accountable for our P&L (Profit and loss statement), and what we cost to the group. But frankly I think sixth position is more important for the motivation, for the reward, and for the sign that this is sending to everyone.

“I think it will also be fair for what has been achieved over the season, for the potential performance of the car and the driver line-up that we have.

“I would like to leave Abu Dhabi on a high, with the motivation that we need for the winter to do what we need to do for where we need to be next year.”