Briatore - Too soon to judge

Upswing in performance hoped for in May

Renault team boss Flavio Briatore believes it unfair to judge the team's performance after just two grands prix.

Upon his return to the team, double world champion Fernando Alonso started the season brightly by finishing fourth in the season-opening Australian Grand Prix, the Spaniard albeit one of just seven finishers on the road in Melbourne.

However, the Malaysian Grand Prix was rather less attritional, with Alonso picking up just one point in Sepang courtesy of an eighth-place finish.

Renault currently lie fifth in the constructors' championship - 18 points behind leaders McLaren-Mercedes - but Briatore remains confident they can start to make inroads when the European part of the season starts at the end of April.

He told the official F1 website: "It does not make sense to judge a car after one or two races.

"Of course, McLaren and Ferrari have a fast car, but look what happened to Ferrari in Australia. So we will have to wait and see how it will be at the next couple of races."

True form

When pressed, Briatore expressed the hope that Renault's R28 will start to show its true form at the Turkish Grand Prix in May.

"At the moment we are in a very promising development run, because it would be completely unrealistic to think we can find those missing seconds to McLaren and Ferrari within days," he continued.

"I still cannot judge where we stand at the moment. You can do well in the morning, then you get a problem with the gearbox and a good result vanishes.

"As I just said, wait three or four races and then ask me again, as I will have a pretty good idea of what our status is."


Briatore also refused to comment on rumours - which the driver himself fanned on Tuesday - linking Alonso to Ferrari.

He added: "Fernando is a great sportsman who will always give his best - and rumours I never comment on.

"It is a waste of time to get involved in hypothetical daydreams."