Renault driver Vitaly Petrov has apologised for his outburst against the team on Russian television.
In the interview, Petrov hit out at his team for its tactics and pitstop performances this season, while also questioning a lack of development over the season – which has prevented him from challenging for a repeat of his podium finish in the season opener in Australia [See separate story HERE
However, Petrov has now apologised to the team for his remarks, which his manager Oksana Kossatchenko insists were made in the heat of the moment after the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix, and which the former GP2 racer regretted making.
"It was an emotional interview," she told Reuters
. "It was an exception and he apologised afterwards to the team. It will never happen again.
"We are really sorry and the management has discussed it with Vitaly already."
Kossatchenko revealed she had spoken personally with both Eric Boullier and owner Gerard Lopez about the interview, with Boullier insisting that the matter was now closed.
"The interview you mention was made minutes after Vitaly jumped out of the car last Sunday," he said in an interview published on the Lotus Renault GP website. "The race was tough, he was upset not to have scored points, he was exhausted. Drivers are not robots, they're human beings. Also, like every driver, Vitaly is a competitor. Had he been on the podium in Abu Dhabi, he would have complained about not winning the race.
"We take this incident as exactly this - an incident. Vitaly has apologised to the team and sent an email to all the staff at Enstone. As far as we are concerned, the matter is closed.