Renault exit still unclear

(GMMf1NET) In Monte Carlo on Tuesday, the reigning champion Renault team converged to launch an 'aggressive' defense of its 2005 grand prix crowns.

The fully liveried R26 racer, dubbed 'evolutionary' rather than radical and wearing the coveted number one, was on display for the world's media.

But with rumors of a possible exit from motor sport's biggest stage hanging in the air, many eyes and ears pointed towards Carlos Ghosn, the new CEO of Renault who is renowned for ruthlessly cutting costs.

But while there were no hints of an imminent quit strategy, he didn't exactly offer an iron-clad guarantee that the French carmaker is committed to plugging away on the grid.

Ghosn said: ''As long as we continue to perform well, we offer a good show, and obviously we are at the top level, then there are not questions about the future in formula one.''

He also referred to 'uncertainty' about the post-Concorde period, and advised that a carmaker is only interested if 'good, fair returns' can be assured.

A less polite team boss Flavio Briatore, on the other hand, slammed journalists for spreading 'false information' about Renault's speculated exit.

''These journalists need new jobs,'' the Italian fumed to the 'Evening Echo'.

''Renault want to stay in formula one under certain conditions which is the same as Mercedes, BMW, Honda and Toyota. Five of us want certain conditions.''

Elsewhere, at the Valencia test, Valentino Rossi bumbled around in the Ferrari garage but at the lunch break had still not turned a lap due to rain.

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