Sharizman happy with ‘strongest Renault Junior lineup in four years’

by Ed Spencer

Renault Sport Academy director Mia Sharizman has praised the depth of Renault’s Junior team lineup for 2020 which sees the addition of French Formula 4 champion Hadrien David and Formula Renault Eurocup champion Oscar Piastri.

As Renault’s junior academy enters its fifth year of existence, Sharizman hopes that one of the class of 2020 will fill a seat in one of Renault’s F1 cars in the future.

“This year’s line-up is the strongest we’ve had in the last four years of the Renault Sport Academy,” explained Sharizman. “We’ve struck a balance between experienced and rookie drivers and we believe we can compete for titles across all junior championships in which we’ve entered our members.

As the years progress, we are moving closer to the point where we want to have an Academy driver in contention for the Formula 1 race seat. We remain hopeful that this year is a breakout year for this to happen.

Sharizman is hopeful that all of Renault’s junior drivers can live up to expectations with extra pressure on Christian Lundgaard and Max Fewtrell after four years as Renault backed junior drivers.

“We already know what Max and Christian can do, and they are entering their fourth year on the programme. We were also pleased with how both Zhou and Caio performed in their first season with the Academy.

All drivers have their own targets this year, which they know they have to meet. It’s great to welcome two very talented individuals in Oscar and Hadrien and it’s exciting to see what they can do this season. I’m sure all the drivers will push each other to perform to their best ability.”

The goal set by Renault’s junior academy for this season is for not only junior championships to be won but to also find potential replacements for Esteban Ocon and Daniel Ricciardo when both move on from the Enstone based team.

“It’s always been a two-pronged approach. Firstly, we want to win the junior championships, but from that we also want to try and identify and grow the drivers that could be promoted to the Formula 1 team in the future.”

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