RACE DEBRIEF

    Hot on the heels of finishing fifth in the constructors’ championship in 2019, Renault have announced that Chassis Technical Director Nick Chester is to leave the team.

    Chester joined the ‘Enstone’ team, then known as Benetton, as a test engineer back in 2000, before working his way up to the role of Chassis Technical Director with Lotus in 2013. Renault confirmed that Chester would now begin a period of gardening leave.

    “I have enjoyed 19 years in a team with great spirit and have worked with an incredibly loyal and talented group of people,” said Chester. “I am looking forward to a new challenge and wish everybody in the team all the best for the future.”

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    F1 Grand Prix of Abu Dhabi
    Renault finished fifth, one place behind customer team McLaren, in the 2019 constructors' championship

    Commenting on Chester’s departure, Renault Team Principal Cyril Abiteboul said: “Nick has been a key part of Enstone for almost 20 years. His passion for the team has never wavered, despite experiencing some extremely challenging times.

    “More recently, his commitment, technical insight and enthusiasm have inspired us to move from the back of the grid to the front of the midfield. We would like to sincerely thank Nick for everything and wish him every success in the next stage of his career.”

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    Renault’s announcement comes a month after the team confirmed that former Ferrari and McLaren technical chief Pat Fry would come on board for 2020, as Renault seek to close the gap to the top three teams, as well as moving back ahead of their customer squad McLaren in the constructors’ standings.

    Meanwhile, another change for the team for 2020 is the arrival of Esteban Ocon alongside Daniel Ricciardo, with the Frenchman having tested this year’s Renault R.S.19 in Abu Dhabi earlier this week.

    Esteban Ocon's F1 return with Renault