Date: 31st March 2015 at 9:24am
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French manufacturer Renault probably do not know which way to turn.

Formula One can be a fickle game.

Renault have numerous Formula One titles to their name, they’ve won both the drivers and constructors championships as an engine supplier for Williams, Benetton and Red Bull Racing in the past and have also won both titles twice as a manufacturer in their own right.

Overall they have powered 11 Formula One World Champions to the title and taken 12 constructors titles, with over 160 Grand Prix wins making them one of the most successful engine suppliers in the history of Formula One.

One of their most dominant periods was through the partnership with Red Bull Racing and Sebastian Vettel, taking four drivers and constructors titles in successive seasons.

However, despite being heavily involved in the talks regarding the new engine regulations from their inception and playing a major role in the development of the new Formula One regulations, Renault were left behind in 2014.

Renault power won three Grand Prix with Daniel Ricciardo and Red Bull Racing, but only once Mercedes had suffered problems.

In 2015 they appear to be even further adrift much to the frustration of Red Bull Racing, who have fired numerous criticisms at their French partners.

This criticism has left Renault contemplating their future in Formula One, a move which would leave Red Bull Racing and sister team Toro Rosso in limbo as neither Mercedes or Ferrari are likely to be keen to supply them with engines.

‘We are looking at a lot of options, including getting out of Formula 1 if it’s bad for Renault’s reputation,’ Managing Director of Renault Sport F1 Cyril Abiteboul said prior to the Malaysian Grand Prix.

‘We think we are a credible player in the sport but you need to think about what else we need to do on top of what we already are. But right now, the focus remains on the engine.’

Another option for Renault could be to become a manufacturer once again, taking their destiny back into their own hands.

One option ironically could be to purchase Toro Rosso from Red Bull, something that Toro Rosso’s team principal Franz Tost would welcome.

‘To be owned by a manufacturer would be exactly the step forward which the team needs,’ Tost said whilst sitting next to Abiteboul.

Renault are certainly at a crossroads. Do they withdraw or do they plunge even more effort into Formula One?

 

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