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Abiteboul admits engine performance gap is not reducing

NEWS STORY
18/07/2018

Renault boss Cyril Abiteboul says he's impressed by rival's latest engine upgrades, admitting that the gap isn't reducing.

Though Max Verstappen claimed his Renault-powered Red Bull was missing "70 – 80 bhp" at Silverstone, leaving him feeling as if he was driving an F2 car, the French manufacturer insists that the performance gap was actually more about the circuit.

Nonetheless, Cyril Abiteboul admits to being impressed by the recent upgrades from rival manufacturers, particularly Ferrari.

I'm impressed by our competitors," he admits, according to Motorsport.com. "I'm impressed by what we are doing, but I'm also impressed by what they are doing, because it's a fact that the gap is not really reducing. What we are doing is just allowing us to keep that gap.

"I think Ferrari in particular has made an important step for the past few races," he continued, "with its works team and also its customer teams. It's very visible, and we have to factor that into what we are doing, and to the priorities that we put. We have to keep on delivering what we're supposed to deliver on power."

Referring to Silverstone, and the perceived power deficiencies, he said: "It's amazing how much the tracks are changing, particularly this year with the extra effect of normal aero development and tyres with more grip, but also a lot of tracks have been resurfaced. We don't always know what to expect from this resurfacing, and it really was a surprise to see the amount of grip offered by this new Silverstone, and the percentage of the track where you are now on full throttle.

"It makes it one of the most power sensitive tracks that we've seen so far," he admits. "A couple of years ago in everyone's mind a track like Montreal was one of the most sensitive. It's actually a joke now, compared to Austria or Silverstone.

"So I think that some of the comments made by the drivers need to be put in the context of the evolution of the track. You don't necessarily expect that from Silverstone, but in reality this is the new Silverstone."

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