The head of Renault’s racing programme, Jerome Stoll, is due to be replaced by Thierry Koskas on January 1, 2019, as the French manufacturer continues its pursuit of a Formula One title.
Stoll, who is set to retire at the end of 2018, became the president of Renault Sport Racing in 2016 as the brand returned to Formula One as a factory team. He outlined a two-stage plan to win the world championship, with the first stage focused on restructuring the team over a three-year period and the second stage aimed at bringing it back to the very front of the grid.
Koskas, who comes to the role after three years as Renault’s sales and marketing executive vice president, is due to kick off the second stage of the plan when he joins at the beginning of next year. A press release confirmed he would work alongside Renault Sport Racing’s managing director Cyril Abiteboul with the aim of bringing the team “to the highest level of the discipline”.
Renault looks set to finish this year’s constructors’ championship in fourth place after holding off a challenge from rivals Haas over the last few rounds. The team has been out-developed towards the end of the season by its closest rivals but has made no secret of its plans to work towards a championship assault in 2021 following the next major regulation change.
Key to Renault’s restructuring has been the appointment of Marci Budkowski from the FIA to head up its technical department as well as Daniel Ricciardo joining the team from Red Bull next year.
Renault’s power unit remains a major weakness in the team’s overall package and its engine department in Viry Chatillon has failed to close the gap in performance to Mercedes and Ferrari since the introduction of the current engine regulations in 2014. In 2019 Renault will lose Red Bull as a customer team to rival manufacturer Honda, which has been making progress this year after massive investment in its F1 project.