Renault succeeded in "resurrecting" itself during the 2010 season, claims its new team principal Eric Boullier after seeing the outfit finish the campaign with a strong showing in Abu Dhabi.
The team had come into the year still under the cloud of the race-fixing scandal that rocked it at the end of 2009, but a change of ownership, an improved car and fresh impetus from Robert Kubica put Renault back on the podium. Boullier, who was brought in through his close links with new majority shareholder Genii Capital, says he is in no doubt how important the year was for everyone.
"I think it was a positive season, I don't see any negatives," Boullier told AUTOSPORT. "The positive was to have reinstated in this team a positive light, to clearly show they are very capable and they can do a very good job, they are competent and they are racers.
"Starting from where we were, which was very far [behind], the team resurrected itself. Our [Genii's] arrival helped a bit, but they had started the car already before, and it has been good to keep pushing all the season, and see these guys bringing developments and [those developments being] nicely done.
"We are very proud of them and very proud to be a part of this team because I am pretty sure that having reinstated this positive light they will be strong contenders for coming years."
Renault is closing in on a deal with the Lotus car company for a title sponsorship deal for next season – but Boullier said it was too early to make any firm comments about the situation.
"There is not much I can say because we are still discussing," he said. "But I think thanks to the results and the great work from these guys, maybe we have attracted a couple of companies who are suddenly interested in us and see us as a potential top team in the future. That is where we want to be. If we can handle the discussions positively and with a good hand definitely it will be good to have a stable and solid future."
Boullier also said that his team had no qualms about the role it played in the outcome of the title battle in Abu Dhabi – where Kubica and Vitaly Petrov finished ahead of Ferrari's Fernando Alonso, denying him the chance to get the points that would have made him champion.
"We did our race, so that is it," said Boullier. "This is racing. There is no other comment to make. We wanted to grab points and we had a chance to have a very solid drive. Both our drivers did a very good job. Robert did an amazing one to overtake on the track at the right time and then push at the right rhythm. The team did a good strategy and, at the end, I am happy to have both cars in the top six.
"We understood that our car position on the track was helping Red Bull, but we not do anything for them – we did our own race."