Renault's 2007 driver line-up : post your speculation here!
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  1. #1
    Fellow Frogger! Pug-a-lug's Avatar
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    Default Renault's 2007 driver line-up : post your speculation here!

    To avoid derailing the WRC Monte Carlo thread.

    If Webber has a consistent 2006 season, Flavio may bring him in as the 'experienced old hand' to show Heikki the ropes. Webber been around since 2002 now... and provided he keeps his nose clean and races consistently (as he did towards the end of last season) Flavio may considering dangling the $$$'s in front of Frank and try to get him released.

    Of course, he also may go for Montoya.

    However, although Montoya is a more accomplished driver than Webber, his personality may not be compatible with having a younger driver teamed with him.

    What I'm basically saying is that Flavio may bring Webber in as a de-facto #2 until Heikki comes up to speed...

    ..and that Flavio may view Heikki as 'Alonso Mark 2'.

    Of course, Renault could sell the team at the end of this season so all this talk is immaterial!

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    Last edited by Pug-a-lug; 25th January 2006 at 11:47 AM.

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    How about a Nismo F1 GP team? Renaults own Nissan dont they
    They have a proven team already, why waste it now. As a investment its worth over 100million just to get to this level (ie winning races, which Honda & Toyota cant seems to do)
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    I know a while ago I posted a thread along the lines of "Webber to drive for Renault in 2006"

    well now am going to say "Webber to drive for renault in 2007"

    Webber got his first brake in F1 with Flavio and Renault. He was their test driver before he signed with Minardi. Flavio still manages webber and he still holds Webber in very high regard. There was a fight with Flavio and Frank over who would get Button (before the BAR Honda contract got ugly) at times it was like..."you can have button if we get webber" type stuff. Now obviously that has changed, but with the loss of Alonso, I think Flavio will be very eager to have webber as a driver.
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    I'd think Renault would want a championship capable winning driver, preferably one that has got a title before. Seeing as he has Alonso now, going into the 2nd tier drivers will be a negative for the team.
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    Playlife - I agree that there is a danger with Renault losing a 'talisman' like Alonso that it will have a similar effect to losing Schumacher in 1995.

    And remember, the only drivers going around at the moment who have a world championship are Villeneuve, Schumacher and Alonso.

    However, I have a high regard for Flavio.. he is quite canny and I believe that he has invested a lot of time and effort into the Renault driver program and if he thinks Heikki can step into Alonso's shoes... then IMO there is no doubt he will grab a race seat.

    IMO there are only two 'class drivers' in the field these days... Alonso and Raikonnen. All the others are much of a muchness....

    In other words, I'm not sure if choosing Heikki will necessarily be a 'negative thing'.

  6. #6
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    Default 2007 Renault Drivers

    Renault do have a strong driver training program. Renault have never bought in a champion before. They have promoted youth -Prost who went on to win with McLaren and Williams. Renault by that time had pulled out of making F1 cars and became an engine supplier.
    I can sadly see that Carlos Ghosn may repeat history and pull Renault out of the F1 championship again. Renault has decreasing market share and a budget to balance.
    If he doesn't then there are a couple of possible champion drivers out of left-field.
    Sebastian Bordais (FR) from Indy (who wants to F1 test, but whom Flavio doesn't like)
    Sebastian Loeb (FR) from WRC who has just recently also expressed a wish to F1 test.
    The publicity momentum that Renault would get would be huge. And they're both French. mmm!

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    Quote Originally Posted by David M
    Renault has decreasing market share and a budget to balance.
    Stats I've seen say that although Renault's European sales declined last year, their overall sales grew by about 1.5%, due to a 20% growth in overseas sales.

    For our sakes, let's hope that the Renault board can attribute this global increase due to the F1 brand presence and continue to fund the Enstone boys for a few more years yet.

    Oh - and Prost debuted with McLaren in 1980. He was then poached by Renault in 1981 and was fired in 1983 for failing to beat Piquet for the Championship. History shows who got the better of that deal!

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    Quote Originally Posted by Pug-a-lug
    Oh - and Prost debuted with McLaren in 1980. He was then poached by Renault in 1981 and was fired in 1983 for failing to beat Piquet for the Championship. History shows who got the better of that deal!

    Kind of ironic really seeing as the Renault's lack of reliability and drop-off at the end of the season ultimately lost Prost the title...and only by 2 points too.
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    Quote Originally Posted by David M
    Sebastian Loeb (FR) from WRC who has just recently also expressed a wish to F1 test.
    The publicity momentum that Renault would get would be huge. And they're both French. mmm!
    Peugeot Citroen SA will never let Loeb drive Renault while he has contract with Citroen WRC team. Renault is PSA's arch rival. Usually even having same sponsor helps but they don't even have the same: Mild Seven for Renault <-> Gauloises Blondes for Kronos Citroen.

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    Villeneuve won't never pick up a drive for a top tier team again, Schumacer will stay with Ferrari, which leaves Alonso, and Raikonennen both of which I don't see in the long team going to, or staying at Renault. I do believe that the next star for Renault will have to come out of the left field...

    As for Bordais what is the sucsess rate of drivers coming from Cart to F1 since Andretti? not all that many have been huge sucseses from memory, and there have been quite a few.

    Loeb... well others have said it... he is tied down to PSA, and won't test drive for Renault without a big sh!t fight happening, and I don't think that'll happen.

    Sorry to say guys, but I don't see many drivers people have listed here as solid options for Renault
    Last edited by orestes; 26th January 2006 at 01:52 AM.

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    Renault driver lineup for 2007.

    1. Heikki Kovalainen
    2. Giancarlo Fisichella

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    Quote Originally Posted by orestes
    As for Bordais what is the sucsess rate of drivers coming from Cart to F1 since Andretti? not all that many have been huge sucseses from memory, and there have been quite a few.

    Both before and after Michael Andretti the success rate of drivers from the USA has been very poor, only a handful have done half decent.
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    Alonso just quit (last weekend) management contract with Flavio Briatore.

    I would suspect that Flavio will start to lose his intrest in Alonso (which is very understandable). He will probably like more Heikki and Fisi. If Alonso cannot deliver decent results Mr. Briatore can dump him in the middle of season. This has happened before...on JJ Lehto at Benetton with Flavio on the charge.

    And on the other team with other team boss namely Ferrari and Alain Prost.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Pate
    Alonso just quit (last weekend) management contract with Flavio Briatore.

    I would suspect that Flavio will start to lose his intrest in Alonso (which is very understandable). He will probably like more Heikki and Fisi. If Alonso cannot deliver decent results Mr. Briatore can dump him in the middle of season. This has happened before...on JJ Lehto at Benetton with Flavio on the charge.
    Flavio did it two seasons ago with Trulli!

    As long as Alonso delivers race wins I would expect him to receive the full backing for Flavio and the Renault team.

    What will be interesting is the performance of McLaren over the next few seasons now that Adrian Newey is no longer with them.

    Does anyone know if Nikolas Tombazis followed Newey to Red Bull? Or has he stayed at McLaren?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Pug-a-lug
    Flavio did it two seasons ago with Trulli!

    As long as Alonso delivers race wins I would expect him to receive the full backing for Flavio and the Renault team.

    What will be interesting is the performance of McLaren over the next few seasons now that Adrian Newey is no longer with them.

    Does anyone know if Nikolas Tombazis followed Newey to Red Bull? Or has he stayed at McLaren?

    Tombazis has left McLaren and returned to Ferrari, and head of aerodynamics at McLaren Peter Prodromou has left to join Newey at Red Bull.
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    Holy moly!! Are you serious?!?!

    If I was Alonso I'd be sh11ting bricks right about now!

    Can you provide a link?

    They still have Neil Oatley and Mike Coughlan, but to lose Newey, Tombazis and Promodrou rips the heart out of their aero department.

    I spoke to a McLaren aero person in November. He said that they were expecting Adrian to leave at some point and so had made the necessary arrangements within the company to ensure that the transition period after his departure was as seamless as possible.

    Not sure how they will cope losing Tombazis and Prodromou.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Pug-a-lug
    Holy moly!! Are you serious?!?!

    If I was Alonso I'd be sh11ting bricks right about now!

    Can you provide a link?

    They still have Neil Oatley and Mike Coughlan, but to lose Newey, Tombazis and Promodrou rips the heart out of their aero department.

    I spoke to a McLaren aero person in November. He said that they were expecting Adrian to leave at some point and so had made the necessary arrangements within the company to ensure that the transition period after his departure was as seamless as possible.

    Not sure how they will cope losing Tombazis and Prodromou.
    Sorry I seemed to have jumped the gun, they are not official moves as yet.
    http://www.itv-f1.com/News_Article.aspx?PO_ID=34912

    I wonder if Alonso was made aware of such personnel changes before he signed up.
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    Not sure how long Alonso's contract negotiations were, but I would imagine that he knew that Newey was leaving when he signed on the dotted line.

    Rory Byrne has left full-time from Ferrari, so I would imagine that Ross Brawn would love to put Tombazis into some part of Rory's old position.

    EDIT: Conflicting news from autosport.com. McLaren say that Prodromou is staying for 2006 at least.
    Last edited by Pug-a-lug; 27th January 2006 at 04:50 PM.

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    Kimi Räikkönen has just been reported to be very upset after yesterdays first drive with new McLaren... He said he is disappointed with the car and especially new V8 engine.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Pate
    Kimi Räikkönen has just been reported to be very upset after yesterdays first drive with new McLaren... He said he is disappointed with the car and especially new V8 engine.

    Yep, and no surprise given the last few years, the engine has lots of problems!
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    I wonder if Kimi will end up an Renault next year??

    I suppose it depends on the relative performance of Ferrari and Renault. Whilst Ferrari are losing Schuey and Rory Bryne, they have replaced him with Nikolas Tombazis (who worked at Ferrari as chief aerodynamicist during Schuey's domination) so I would imagine that they will be back to their best by the end of the season.

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