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Petrov's future is in his own hands - Boullier

ESPNF1 Staff
July 14, 2010 « Coulthard turned down Ferrari | »
Vitaly Petrov has scored six points this season © Sutton Images

Renault team principal Eric Boullier insists Vitaly Petrov's future is in his own hands, amid rumours the team is looking for a more experienced driver in 2011.

Petrov joined the team as a pay driver at the start of the season but has been consistently off the pace of team-mate Robert Kubica, who recently signed for another two years. Speculation in the paddock suggests a new sponsorship deal, possibly with MasterCard, will allow the team to bring in another top-level driver next year such as Kimi Raikkonen to replace the Russian rookie.

However, Boullier insists Petrov's future at Renault will be based on his performances.

"His future is actually in his hands," he told Renault's podcast. "We have not been disappointed by him - he clearly is the best rookie in the paddock.

"He did some very amazing jobs sometimes but he's clearly lacking some consistency to get the points he deserves. We definitely need to have both cars scoring points, so that's obviously creating some rumours surrounding his race seat, but we are totally committed to him. We are happy to have him on board and we will do everything we can to help him take the final step to where we want him to be."

He added: "We now expect him to have some strong weekends and to have good pace and get in the points."

Boullier also said his team was now working flat-out to introduce a working F-duct on the car, but was not clear on when it would be introduced.

"We have some very good developments coming up over the next two or three races," he said. "We have some updates for tracks like Singapore, Monza and Budapest - specific aero upgrades. But we still have some good upgrades including the F-duct coming, so that is quite promising for the rest of the season and I can't wait to have all this on the car.

"There are two steps of F-duct coming, but [when we introduce] it depends on the schedule because Budapest is a much tighter track so we don't need to have it there. Maybe we will get it before but very likely just after."