Daniel Ricciardo says Renault's engine customer McLaren are showing the way for the works team as they try to emerge from the packed midfield fight in Formula 1.
Either Carlos Sainz or Lando Norris have finished as 'best of the rest' in three of the last four races, with Ricciardo taking that honour in the other one – in Canada.
Renault set lofty targets for 2019 after finishing fourth in the constructors' championship last season, with Ricciardo's signing a display of their intention to close the gap on Red Bull, Ferrari and Mercedes.
However, the chasm remains vast, and Renault's first task before aiming at the top three is to overtake a McLaren side finally showing signs of shaking off their multi-year malaise.
"I mean, looking at the McLarens, they're certainly the benchmark now and they've really come on, and they're the ones with that kind of package that we're looking for," Ricciardo said.
"Looking at it, they're able to run more downforce and more efficiently, so they can run higher downforce, yet lose less in the straights.
"So it seems like our package itself, when we do run more, we don't seem to be able to use it well, so that's something.
"Whether that goes back to correlation in the wind tunnel, all these things, I guess all that's going to be addressed.
"But, absolutely, something isn't adding up, and I know the team has invested a lot, and I guess the value for money is not coming yet."
Ricciardo hopes his concerns will push more performance out of Renault.
"I think it's going to force us to get a bit more out of ourselves," he said. "Obviously I'm not happy being beaten, but I think it's going to push us to a better level, so that's our target now and we need to find a way to catch them."
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