RACE DEBRIEF

    Renault have put the “majority” of their staff on an enforced absence from work, with active staff – including senior management – taking a pay cut to protect the team amid the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.

    McLaren, Williams and Racing Point – as well as F1 – have already furloughed some of their staff with the remainder, including drivers, taking a reduction in salary.

    Earlier this week, it was announced the mandatory factory shutdown has been extended by two weeks to 35 consecutive days. Renault say theirs will run until May 3, having begun on March 30.

    In a bid to protect the team and their staff, Renault have introduced a series of measures across their factory at Enstone and engine vase at Viry in France.

    For their staff at Enstone, the French manufacturer say they have applied retrospectively for the British government scheme which pays 80% of salaries for staff who are kept on by their employer, covering wages up to £2,500 per month.

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    “As of April 1st, the vast majority of Enstone staff will effectively have a total shutdown (furlough) until May 31,” the team said in a statement. “This will be reviewed dependent on the development of the situation. It was also agreed to top-up the amount allocated by the government to guarantee a minimum of 80% of the actual salary for all team members. Salaries of active staff, including management, will be reduced in the same proportions.”

    It is unclear whether race drivers Daniel Ricciardo and Esteban Ocon’s salaries are included in this.

    At Viry, Renault has enforced a part-time schedule from April 6 for a provisional period of 12 weeks. The team say that period may be reduced or extended depending on how the situation develops.

    “The very difficult human and sanitary circumstances that we are experiencing and the strict lockdown in France and England, as well as in most of the Grand Prix-organising countries, do not yet allow us to measure the impact on our sport,” said Renault Sport Racing Managing Director Cyril Abiteboul.

    “We therefore must use all the measures at our disposal to get through this prolonged period of uncertainty and inactivity as best as we can, while protecting the whole team we have built over the past four years.”

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