F1 team principal Abiteboul leaves rebranding Renault

By AFP | 12 January 2021

PARIS: Frenchman Cyril Abiteboul is leaving Renault, where he was Formula One team principal, the company announced on Monday in a press release.

Laurent Rossi, director of strategy and business development for Renault, will take over the motor sports unit which will be rebranded Alpine.

The Formula One team, which is based in Enstone in England, will replace its predominantly yellow livery with the red, white and blue of the French flag.

That leaves the responsibility for running the F1 team open and its executive director, the Franco-Polish Marcin Budkowski, could take over the reins.

Abiteboul, 43, joined Renault in 2001 and has spent most of his career there, apart from a stint at the head of the Caterham F1 team from 2012 to 2014. He oversaw the Renault team's return to F1 in 2016.

The team, which won 12 constructors title between 1992 and 2013, was unable to repeat that level of success, but did return to the podium twice as Daniel Ricciardo finished third twice while Esteban Ocon recorded his first top-three finish when he came second in the Sakhir rand Prix in Bahrain.

Ricciardo is leaving the team and will be replaced by Fernando Alonso, who will turn 40 during the season. The Spaniard won his two world titles with Renault in 2005 and 2006.