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Ricciardo Key To Renault Revival

Ricciardo Key To Renault Revival

Renault managing director Cyril Abiteboul says the capture of Daniel Ricciardo will help “fast-track” the team to success.

Renault managed to convince the Australian star to swap Red Bull for Enstone ahead of the 2019 season and Abiteboul believes Ricciardo can help them return to the front of the grid.

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The manufacturer came fourth in the team standings last season with 122 points, but they were 533 behind champions Mercedes and nearly 300 adrift of Red Bull immediately above them.

Abiteboul is aware Renault have plenty of work to do before they are back fighting for silverware although he feels Ricciardo can speed up their bid to become serious title contenders.

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“We are not limited by finance, we are not limited by budget,” Abiteboul told Autosport. “What is limiting us is time. “One thing that Daniel should help us is compress that time because suddenly everyone is more interested in Renault.

“If I talk about the positions we have available, maybe more engineers or more people will be interested in joining us because we have sent that statement. “Daniel is a way to fast-track that scarcest resource we have, which is time.”

Renault have set a target of being in a position to challenge for wins in 2020 and Abiteboul says that remains the target.

But he concedes even with Ricciardo on board, they will struggle to compete with Mercedes, Ferrari and Red Bull this year.

He added: “I don’t see us suddenly in a position to fight for wins or the championship. That is not what we have told him and he has been clear about that, too.

“Anyone can think what they want about the road map that we have defined [wins in 2020], but I think it is already quite aggressive.”

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