Renault announced the Formula One comeback of Danish driver Kevin Magnussen at the launch on Wednesday of a new-look team that will put the French carmaker back on the starting grid as a constructor.
Magnussen, whose F1 career appeared to have stalled after he spent last year on the sidelines and then got cast aside by McLaren, has replaced Pastor Maldonado after the Venezuelan’s funding dried up.
He will partner British rookie Jolyon Palmer, whose signing was announced last year by the team when they were racing as Lotus F1. Frenchman Frederic Vasseur will run day-to-day operations as racing director.
Renault bought back the team, which they had sold at the end of 2009 after winning championships with Spaniard Fernando Alonso in 2005 and 2006, last December.
They will now compete under the Renault Sport Formula One name, with Renault branding prominent, along with that of the Infiniti luxury marque, which is part of the Renault-Nissan alliance.
“We are not here (just) to participate … we are here to compete at the highest level and eventually win,” Renault Chief Executive Carlos Ghosn told reporters at the company’s Technocentre at Guyancourt outside Paris.
“It’s not going to happen in 2016 … it’s going to take more time,” Ghosn said. He set a target of podium appearances in the next three years.