Abiteboul: ‘Barriers’ holding new teams back

Date published: May 9 2017

Renault Formula 1 boss Cyril Abiteboul has complained that the current structure of the sport does hinder new teams.

 The Frenchman said that teams as big as Mercedes would find it difficult to integrate themselves in Formula 1 if they were just starting out, and would like to see the rules reviewed as a result.

"The sport to a certain degree is fair," Abiteboul told Motorsport.com.

"The one caveat I would say to that is that I believe that the structure of the current Concorde Agreement doesn't necessarily allow for newcomers to come in the right conditions.

"For example, if Mercedes was to join today, I'm not sure that even with the success that they had over the years they would be able to be in the same position they are today in five years' time.

"New barriers have been created. If they joined today they would not be able to enjoy the benefits by executing the same remarkable plan. That's the sort of thing that needs to be reviewed."

Abiteboul is also well aware that it is only success on the track which will present new opportunities, such as joining the Strategy Group in 2018.

"In fairness to Bernie and anyone else in the sport, the respect comes with success," Abiteboul added.

"We will deserve the respect when we are successful, and that's what I'm constantly explaining to the people here.

"We're not part of the Strategy Group, but firstly we were not there when the Strategy Group was set up, and there is a ‘hot' seat, which is currently occupied by Force India, and if we want to be in the Strategy Group, we know what we have to do.

"I'm not the type of guy to constantly feel sorry for myself and our position.

"Bernie had his opinion about Renault, but when Renault was winning back in 2005 and 2006 with very successful drivers, and also a well-recognised team principal [Flavio Briatore], Bernie was extremely respectful of Renault, our voice was counting.

"If we want this situation to happen again, we know what we have to do."