Renault debate Formula One future

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The Independent Online

Renault are understood to be again debating their future in Formula One.

A month ago the French manufacturing giant held a board meeting to discuss whether to continue in the sport, that coming hours after Toyota confirmed they were pulling out with immediate effect.

At the time Renault CEO Carlos Ghosn called for patience, insisting a decision would be made before the end of the year.

In a recent interview Ghosn questioned Renault's involvement in F1 at a time when three manufacturers - Honda, BMW and Toyota - have pulled out of the sport in the last 12 months.

The situation would appear to be drawing to a close, with rumours rife David Richards' Prodrive organisation are poised to acquire Renault's F1 team.

Renault's withdrawal would not be lock, stock and barrel as it is believed they would continue to supply engines through to the end of the 2012 season.

Part of the deal with Prodrive would see the Banbury-based company use Renault engines.

Former BAR team principal Richards has twice tried to return to F1 with his own team in recent years.

Richards was due to enter Prodrive as a customer team in 2008 using a McLaren chassis and Mercedes engine, only to be thwarted on that occasion.

Earlier this year Prodrive appeared set for one of the three new places on the grid for 2010, but their reluctance to use Cosworth engines after agreeing a deal with Mercedes apparently cost them dear.