Renault wants Hulk to impress, Palmer to progress

Cyril Abiteboul has shared the targets that Renault has set out for Formula 1 drivers Nico Hulkenberg and Jolyon Palmer, with the German expected to “impress” while his British team-mate needs to show “progress”.

The French constructor endured a challenging return as a fully-fledged works entry last year, only beating Sauber and Manor to ninth in the championship.

Renault decided to retain Palmer following steady improvement over the course of his rookie campaign, while Hulkenberg joined from Force India.

The 2015 Le Mans 24 Hours winner has shown flashes of brillance on many occasions but is still looking for that elusive first podium after 115 starts.

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“We want Hulkenberg to come in and impress, while we expect progress from Palmer,” Abiteboul told French publication Auto Plus.

“Our goal is to improve our position in the Constructors’ standings. On the chassis side, we need to show better performance right away and keep tabs on our development rate. We must go faster.

“On the engine front, we need to confirm and build on what we did last year. We have gone for a new and aggressive design, but we have to run a reliable and more competitive package all year long.

“We’ll be able to measure our progress thanks to our valuable partnership with Red Bull, which will serve as a good yardstick for us.”

Renault recently announced it had hired Pete Machin from Red Bull to head its aerodynamics department, starting on July 3.

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