Daniel Ricciardo is leaving Renault, but Cyril Abitebould says that Esteban Ocon won’t receive preferential treatment in the meantime.
The Aussie agreed a deal with McLaren to replace Carlos Sainz and drive for the British team for two years at the least.
Ocon meanwhile is embarking on the first of two years that he’ll spend with the French team. With him being French himself and just 23, many believe he could become the team’s long-term lead man.
Despite this, team principal Cyril Abiteboul claims that the two drives will be treated equally this season.
“There won’t be any preferential treatment between Esteban [Ocon] and Daniel on the back of his decision, because it’s not the policy of the team,” he said in a Renault media call as per motorsport.com.
“It’s not also a necessity, let’s be honest, as I’m not fighting for any championship as we stand here right now. It would make absolutely no sense, and Daniel will be involved in the development process of the car.”
A common concern amongst teams is that their driver will take information regarding their car to his new team. However, this isn’t something that Abitedboul is worried about due to the fact that McLaren won’t be able to develop their current car much for 2021.
“With the way that the structure is, that the cars are more or less frozen between this year and next year, and also McLaren will have to use all their tokens on the pure chassis/engine integration, so no performance development there, that will give us the opportunity to work extremely normally with Daniel,” he added.
“The only thing is he won’t be exposed to 2022. But frankly, he would not be anyway, because it’s still a bit far away from a driver perspective, even though a substantial part of our workforce is already on to 2022.”