Pilbeam leaves McLaren for Renault as Enstone expansion continues

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Pilbeam leaves McLaren for Renault as Enstone expansion continues
Adam Cooper
By: Adam Cooper
Dec 15, 2016, 2:25 PM

Renault Sport has confirmed the latest changes to its personnel line-up, with company veteran Rob White moving from Viry to the UK as operations director and Ciaron Pilbeam returning to Enstone as chief race engineer.

Rob White, Renault Sport Deputy Managing Director, in the FIA Press Conference
Jolyon Palmer, Renault Sport F1 Team RS16
Kevin Magnussen, Renault Sport F1 Team RS16
Ciaron Pilbeam, McLaren Chief Race Engineer
Jolyon Palmer, Renault Sport F1 Team RS16 at the start of the race
Jolyon Palmer, Renault Sport F1 Team RS16

The arrival of Pilbeam, who has worked at BAR, Red Bull, Lotus and most recently McLaren, is part of a 20% expansion in the overall headcount.

“2016 was always about laying the foundations for the future as we are committed to Formula 1 for the long haul,” said Renault Sport boss Cyril Abiteboul.

“Our 2016 car, the R.S.16, was conceived in an unbelievably short time frame – literally a couple of weeks – so our focus for this year has been on expansion of headcount and infrastructure and looking to next year and beyond.

“Expansion is not the work of a moment so we’ve been recruiting people through the year and they have been joining us throughout the season.

"It’s definitely a case of targeting a quality workforce to come join us, but we do require a significant quantity of personnel in Enstone as we grow at a level allowing us to fight against the top teams.

“As part of this I’m happy to confirm that we have two appointments to Enstone’s senior management with Rob White transferring from Viry-Châtillon as Operations Director and Ciaron Pilbeam returning to us as Chief Race Engineer.

Meanwhile, the Enstone facility itself is being expanded: “In terms of facilities, we are significantly increasing our on-site CNC machining capacity with two new machines in a dedicated building, a new spray and preparation facility is currently being built and we will shortly start extending our main factory building by approximately 800m2 to house the expansion of almost every department at Enstone.

“At Viry-Chatillon we’ve been working on the structure with a process of further evolution to the changes started in the recent past.

"This has meant adapting the structure to change from a power unit supplier to part of a full manufacturer entry in addition to continuing as a supplier to other parties, as well as targeted headcount expansion for better control of our skills and talents.”

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About this article

Series Formula 1
Teams Renault F1 Team
Author Adam Cooper