The fact that Jolyon Palmer has had a poor first half of the 2017 F1 season is an understatement at best.
With speculations of Robert Kubica’s sensational return to F1 building and Carlos Sainz unhappy at Toro Rosso, rumours naturally started to spread regarding Renault’s position on Palmer’s career and potential replacements.
However, Renault F1 boss Cyril Abiteboul has shut down media speculations about Jolyon Palmer’s place at Renault this season and shown confidence in his driver.
Photo : Mark Thompson – Getty Images
“I have completely dismissed speculation of him being replaced in Budapest”, said Abiteboul ahead of the past weekend’s British GP. “It’s not good, particularly on Sunday morning.
“When I found out the proportion it had taken on the media side, I made it clear to everyone that there was absolutely nothing true in that, and I told that to Jo directly. I wanted to clear that off his mind before the race start.”
At his home race for the British Grand Prix, Palmer qualified a respectable P11 but a hydraulic issue on the formation lap meant that he had to retire the car even before the start, whereas his team-mate finished in a very impressive P6.
“We are extremely sorry and frustrated for Jo”, said Abiteboul post race. “There is no good moment, but it was definitely not a good moment. He knows that he has our support, and our commitment.
“It’s a big disappointment what happened to him because he was feeling very well in the car, and in the team, and his confidence is rebuilding but he has to have the hardware.
“I’m sure that with all that happened today, and looking at the pace of Nico, he would have had the capacity to be in the points.
“I think the potential of the team, and the potential of the car, is there. And that is the easiest way to rebuild confidence and motivation.”
Feature image : Zak Mauger – LAT Images
– Aditya Bhat.