Ricciardo did not cost Renault a ‘stupid amount’

Date published: January 22 2019

Daniel Ricciardo: Renault talk costs

Renault boss Cyril Abiteboul has said the signing of Daniel Ricciardo has not come at the cost of developing their car.

The arrival of the Aussie represents a major acquisition by the Renault team as they look to build on their P4 finish in the Constructors’ Championship and challenge the top three.

Renault would have had to splash plenty of cash to try and prise Ricciardo away from Red Bull, but Abiteboul said it was a “sensible” amount rather than a “stupid” total.

“I would also like to say that the commercial arrangement with Daniel is extremely sensible and nowhere near what can exist elsewhere in F1,” Abiteboul told Motorsport.

“It is obviously commensurate to the level of his skills and talent, and what he can bring to the team. But it is not a stupid amount of money.

“So I think it has all been done in a sensible way, and it is not in a way that will be detrimental to the team who can keep on spending on the development of the car and the engine.”

Abiteboul was also keen to reassure that Renault boast big finances and have the power to attract both big-name drivers and continue at full-speed in their development programme.

“There is a considerable financial commitment from Renault,” he added.

“But it is not a question of whether Renault can afford it: it can definitely afford it as our turnover is 40 times the turnover of Red Bull. There is no question mark about that.

“The question mark is about the value. Does it make sense to invest that type of money in a driver at the level of Daniel at this point of our journey, with the car that we have and the other expense that we must do? We believe so.

“There has been some discussion about that. Would we be better off investing in to the car or the drivers?

“I think we have reached a point where we can invest in both reasonably.”

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