Esteban Ocon has targeted a podium finish in his debut campaign with Renault, despite the team having yet to take t the rostrum since returning to Formula 1.
Daniel Ricciardo made similar exclamations about targeting a top-three finish at a race when swapping Red Bull for Renault, but the 2019 season was a disappointment, which saw the French squad slip from fourth to fifth in the constructors’ championship.
Ocon will fill the German’s shoes for 2020, having tested the Renault in 2019’s post-season test in Abu Dhabi, an event which fills the Frenchman with confidence looking ahead.
He told RMC: “There is a little bit of work to do, but above all, there is a good feeling that went with the team and that was created between us, so the first two days were really crucial.
“I really could see the differences between the Mercedes and the Renault and started working on it.
“Renault’s ambitions [for 2020] will be to do better than this year. This year, we clearly underperformed.
“I was not part of it yet, but in any case the team wants to do much better than that [fifth in the championship], it is not the ambition to finish fifth.
“We will have to progress from there, develop the car, get closer to the three big teams, Mercedes, Ferrari and Red Bull.
“My personal goal will be to make a podium during the year.
“I think that if we can do that, it will mean that we have taken a big step forward. So we will see, we will put the car down, we will start working around it and then we will really set serious goals.”
Ocon is yet to take to the podium in 50 grand prix outings.