Boullier hopeful Russian won’t let him down; Renault set to introduce f-duct in late August
Renault team principal Eric Boullier believes that Vitaly Petrov’s future at the Enstone-based team is now in his own hands.
Petrov’s debut year in Formula One has often been overshadowed by his team-mate, Robert Kubica – who has consistently scored points, including a podium at Monaco.
With Renault having recently announced that Kubica has agreed to stay at the team at 2012, and with speculation linking Kimi Raikkonen to the team for next season, the Russian’s seat appears to be under threat.
However, speaking on Renault’s F1 Podcast, Boullier says he is happy with the 25-year-old’s performance so far, but would like him to see him score more points.
“His future is in his hands,” the Frenchman said. “We have not been disappointed by him – he clearly is the best rookie in the paddock.
“He did some very amazing jobs sometimes [but] he clearly today lacking some consistency to get the points he deserves. We definitely need to have both cars scoring points, so that’s obviously creating some rumours surrounding his race seat.
“But we are totally committed to him. We are happy to have him on board and we will do everything we can to help him take the final step to where we want him to be.”
Boullier also revealed that Renault would introduce a number of new upgrades over the second half of the season, with its own version of the f-duct system scheduled for Spa in August.
“The second part of the season will be crucial to see where exactly our pace is and if we can get the best of our car to get some more pace and more podiums,” he said.
“You always have some inertia, when you have an upgrade on the car the decision to do it and to manufacturer it was done two weeks or maybe three races before. So we still have some good developments coming for the next two, three or four races.
“We obviously have some specific tracks like Singapore, Monza or Budapest where we will have a special aerodynamics package. But we still have some good upgrades including an F-duct coming so that is quite promising for the end of the season. Actually I can’t wait to have all this on the car!
“[Its introduction will be] depending on the production, because now we have validated a good package, and depending on the schedule because Budapest is a high-downforce track so we don’t need to have it there. Maybe we will get it before but very likely right after.”