Renault stand firm over Budkowski uproar


Renault boss Cyril Abiteboul has said the team are "not here to make friends" as they look to bring in Marcin Budkowski from the FIA despite the Strategy Group voicing their concerns.

Budkowski has acquired highly valuable information about the team's plans for their 2018 cars and, after resigning from his role in the FIA's technical knowledge, is set to take that knowledge with him to Renault once his gardening leave ends in January.

Mercedes, Ferrari, Red Bull, Williams, McLaren and Force India are unsurprisingly not happy with what is deemed as an unethical move and have written to the FIA and F1 CEO Chase Carey to try and block Renault from adding him to their team.

But as the argument rumbles on, Renault believe they are doing what is necessary in order to try and compete with the top teams before the new engine regulations come into place by 2021.

"We want to be one of the top teams by 2020," Abiteboul told Sky.

"It is at one time far away, but given we know what needs to be done, if you look at the 1.0-1.5 second gap between the midfield and the top teams, it is a big jump.

"And that is why we need to be aggressive in in what we do to be there by 2020.

"In this sport you are not here to make friends.

"Obviously there are ways to do things, and anything we do in terms of recruitment – not necessarily Marcin – we need to grow, Enstone needs badly to grow.

"When we took the place it was 475 people, it is now 620 people.

"There is no secret that those people need to come from somewhere, and we have to go chasing from some of the other teams."

Abiteboul is also adamant that any moves they do make are all above board.

"Renault has a very clear track record of being extremely fair and loyal," added Abiteboul.

"So whatever we will do, we will make sure that it is done in a very loyal way and a very fair way to our competitors."