It was announced during last season's summer break that the Aussie would be teaming up with Renault at the end of the season, and as he prepares for his first season with the French manufacturer, Abiteboul has revealed some staff members cut their Christmas break short by the knowlegde they'd have Ricciardo in 2019.
"If you were standing in our position, and looking at the opportunity of securing Daniel last summer and deciding not do it, what does that mean? It means that you don't believe in yourself," the Renault managing director said, as quoted by RaceFans.
"How do you want me to be standing in front of the factory and trying to motivate everyone and explaining to everyone that we are in line with the plan, but if you have one of the best drivers out there that's available and you don't go for him, what would that mean?
"By default, we could not let that opportunity pass without seizing it. And now, it's just accepting the responsibility that this means for, for me for myself, for Renault, and for the whole team.
"In winter in Viry, we've got the team open on Saturdays, we cancelled holidays. We usually have a factory shut down on week 52 before Christmas because that's the best way to optimise resources. We cancelled that. No one criticised that decision on the basis of the driver that we have."