Abiteboul claims Renault is quicker than McLaren

27-06-2019 08:47
by Matt Gretton
Abiteboul claims Renault is quicker than McLaren

McLaren outclassed Renault for the majority of the French Grand Prix weekend and Nico Hulkenberg only got past Lando Norris because of a problem on the British driver's car. Despite this, Cyril Abiteboul claims his team is quicker than their rivals as they both push for a four place finish at the end of the 2019 Formula 1 season. 

Both McLarens qualified ahead of both Renault cars for the French Grand Prix. While Abiteboul acknowledges this, his focus for the race in Austria is to beat them over the long runs on Sunday. 

"We've seen that we are just as quick if not quicker than McLaren when not held back, but obviously McLaren was so much faster in qualifying, and that's what matters the most in current F1," Abiteboul told Motorsport.com

"On different compounds and on the longer runs, we are much more competitive against them and the rest of the field. That's going to be the focus in Austria, where probably it's going to be extremely hot, and we know the track can be extremely damaging for the tyres."

Renault managed to close the gap between McLaren and themselves to just two points after the Canadian Grand Prix. The Woking-based team reopened this gap to eight points in France. Abiteboul expects this gap to keep on swinging in both of the teams favours right up until the season finale in Abu Dhabi

"Having said that we are not miles away, and we were much faster than them in Montreal. What I expect is to see an interesting battle with McLaren for the remainder of the season," the Frenchman added. 

"They are ahead, only the points matter, only the Sunday result matters. We put ourselves after qualifying, looking at the qualifying, but looking at the race, it's much more on par."

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