Fernando Alonso is convinced Renault “have all the ingredients” in place to have a successful 2021 Formula 1 season.

The two-time world champion tested Renault’s latest F1 car at the Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya on Tuesday during a filming day as he steps up his preparations for his return to the sport with the team next year.

Alonso, who described the R.S.20 as a “nice surprise”, has been impressed by Renault’s performances this season and believes the team securing its first podium in nine years at the Nurburgring highlights its recent progression.

“We all have high hopes inside the team, looking at this year, how the team progressed in the championship and in the positions on the weekend,” Alonso said when discussing Renault’s prospects for 2021.

"But at the same time, I think we have to have the feet on the ground, knowing the regulations will be more or less the same until 2022. We know that the deficit all the midfield teams have right now will carry on next year.

“So our feet are on the ground, but with a lot of positive energy and optimism for next year. I think we have a great team, great talented people in the team, great sponsors, a lot of fans around the world, so I think we have all the ingredients to do a good 2021.”

Renault team principal Cyril Abiteboul labelled the team’s first podium in the hybrid era as a constructor as a “statement” of the progress it has made and evidence of the French manufacturer’s development efforts coming to fruition.

“I think the timing is just a fact that the team has progressed,” Abiteboul said after the race at the Nurburgring.

“It’s very visible, since a few races. We understand the car better, the set-up works better… frankly we were a bit worried here because this is the first time we were coming to a track that is extra high downforce and here also it [the car] is working.

“Clearly our car is not good for a podium under absolutely normal circumstance, but what’s good is that when it happens, when there is a lot opportunity, [we are] able to nail it down.”

 

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