Jolyon Palmer’s performance in China last weekend was “embarrassing”.
That is the view of Jason Watt, a former F3000 driver and pundit who scoffed at Briton Palmer finishing dead last in his Renault in Shanghai.
“Kevin (Magnussen) really got the upper hand” in China, Watt, a Dane like Magnussen, told Ekstra Bladet newspaper.
“You have to say that Renault generally had a hard time (in China), but I think it is bordering on embarrassing when Palmer is behind the Manor when there is nothing actually wrong with the car,” he added.
“If he (Palmer) continues like this, then even the money he brings to the team will not secure his seat,” said Watt.
The Danish newspaper quoted Magnussen as saying after the race: “I was much faster than him (Palmer), but I don’t know if there was something wrong with his car.”
Renault is expecting to improve in the coming weeks, mainly by introducing a major upgrade for its engine in Canada.
“Mercedes has done a great job and is far ahead of us, but at the same time I think their learning curve is levelling off, making it easier for us to catch up,” Renault’s Cyril Abiteboul told BT newspaper.
“In fact, we believe we have already reduced the gap to them with the improvements we made during the winter.
“The development will continue, otherwise I’ll be fired,” he laughed.