Renault Sport F1 managing director Cyril Abiteboul has urged F1 chiefs to be more daring with its proposed rule changes, saying it has become so 'afraid' of making wrong decisions that is chooses to make no decision instead.
Having focused on a role of developing power units for customer teams since 2010, Renault returns to F1 as a constructor in 2016 having argued the current regulations do not offer enough 'value' for the engine manufacturers.
Even so, Renault re-enters F1 at a time when the sport is discussing ways to revive interest in a sport that is suffering with waning viewership and has been criticised for being 'too slow', lacking spectacle and erring too far from 'flat-out' competition..
Though its constructor status does not currently earn it a spot on the Strategy Group for the time being, Abiteboul says Renault is supportive of changes being proposed to the race weekend format and the plan to limit the 'endurance' element of racing in favour allowing the drivers to go 'as fast as they can'.
“We are involved as any team is involved but we are not part of the F1 Strategy Group, so we are not part of those discussions. There are a number of things that I've seen, for instance changing the weekend format. We should try that because if it doesn't work out we can always go back to the old system. There are a number of things that are good – making the car go quicker, trying to make sure the drivers don't have to preserve the tyres so much.
“In the past there was endurance on one side and Formula One on the other side and I think for a while Formula One has been leaning to endurance in order to attract and manufacturers, but we should still have those two motor sport categories that are the top of their categories and very separate.
“Endurance should be all about fuel efficiency and technology and Formula One should be about drivers attacking as fast as they can. We want the fastest cars and fastest drivers. We don't really care about the rest. I think the priority for endurance in Formula One has been detrimental to Formula One.”
Despite this, Abiteboul remains pessimistic about the such changes being passed, saying the sport is too conscious of potentially making errors so chooses not to take the risk.
“I'm just a bit afraid that we go to a more conservative solution and try to avoid any change because basically people are afraid of doing a mistake. There is some feelings that Formula One is threatened by a number of things and we are afraid of making the wrong decision, so we prefer to make no decision.
“I think actually making no decision can be a bad decision in itself. We would like to see ambition, we would like to see people being daring and change. If we f*** up we can always deal with that.”