Belfast Telegraph

Friday 18 April 2014

Nelson’s fit of Piquet as Renault pull plug

Nelson Piquet fired a damning parting shot at Flavio Briatore after today being released from his contract with Renault.

After 28 grands prix, and notably 10 this season without scoring a point, Piquet unsurprisingly finds himself out of Formula One.

Yet the Brazilian, rather than going quietly, has chosen to point an accusing finger at Renault team boss Briatore, describing him as his “executioner”.

The 24-year-old has launched a stinging attack on Briatore, who also served as his manager, claiming his arrival at Renault was the start of “the black period” of his career.

“As a beginner in F1, I expected from my team a lot of support and preparation to help me in getting up to the task,” said Piquet, who found himself alongside double world champion Fernando Alonso.

“Instead, I was relegated as 'someone who drives the other car' with no attention at all.

“In addition, on numerous occasions, 15 minutes before qualifying and races, my manager and team boss would threaten me, telling me if I didn't get a good result, he had another driver ready to put in my place.

“In 2008 I scored 19 points, finished once on the podium in second place, having the best debut year of a Brazilian driver in F1.”

Piquet claims Briatore promised him 'equal treatment' this season after being made to sign a performance-based contract requiring him to attain 40% of Alonso's points by the midway point of the year.

However, Piquet insists the Italian reneged on his words as Alonso was often afforded the better car, leaving him with little or no chance in qualifying and the races.

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