Renault still 'wondering' about the legality of Racing Point's 'Pink Mercedes'

Star InactiveStar InactiveStar InactiveStar InactiveStar Inactive

Renault Formula 1 boss Cyril Abiteboul admits he is still "wondering" about the legality of Racing Point's 'pink Mercedes' car.

The Silverstone-based team surprised their rivals in testing with a 2020 design that bears a striking similarity to last year's championship-winning W11.

But while it's not uncommon for other teams to produce their own versions of concepts seen on other cars, the Renault boss is particularly surprised and how pleased Racing Point appear to be at essential copying Mercedes' work.

“They’ve got great photographers, that’s for sure,” Abiteboul sarcastically told French broadcaster Canal+.

Also Read:

“But to be fair, I have noticed how they have quite honestly said they copied Mercedes.

“I think it’s the first time since I joined Formula 1 that someone has been really proud of copying. It’s like someone who forges artworks being super happy with the work he’s done.

“Yet, it’s not worth the original piece, or the pride of working on an original piece."

Racing Point insists the RP20 has been produced legally but the Renault boss, who was rumoured to be considering a protest in Australia, is still unsure whether the methods they claim to have used would be enough to go into the detail the team has with their copycat car.

“The main thing to find out is, based on public information, is it possible to do such an accurate and efficient job?" Abiteboul queried.

“I won’t go any further at this stage, but it is still something we’re wondering about.”

What is largely accepted is Racing Point will certainly be a threat at the front of the midfield once the season gets underway.

"From pre-season testing, straight from the off, they looked very competitive," McLaren driver Lando Norris said.

"They just have a car which performs well everywhere. I think they're just going to start all the weekends off very well.

"It's difficult to know how much they were showing what they could do and so on, or how much they started showing maybe too much, so then they held back more towards the end.

"They're either going to be a long way ahead, or they're within the battle, or maybe just in front. I'm not too sure.

"Compared to last year, they've taken a big step forward, but it's obviously clear why."