Renault hopes to regain lost pace in Barcelona testing

14-05-2019 13:23
by Nicolás Quarles van Ufford
General
Renault hopes to regain lost pace in Barcelona testing

Renault team principal Cyril Abiteboul is hopeful the French team can regain some of the pace they "had to give away" during recent races, as reliability issues had to be fixed at the cost of performance.

After yet another outing that gave the team no points, Renault are on the back foot in the midfield battle - a battle they were expected to dominate this season. 

A cocktail of incidents, bad luck and frankly, poor reliability have left them in eighth place in the constructors' championship.

“I think we were caught out by the reliability issues earlier on in the season and that broke a little bit the [team] dynamic,” Abiteboul told Motorsport.com.

“And frankly, in a sport that is involving more than 1000 people including two drivers, that is important, and that caused some damage.

“The second element, which is more tangible, is that we had to be a bit safer on a number of occasions. The test that is coming at Barcelona will be important to assess some elements that we brought to the car, but also to try to recover some of the performance that we had to give away because of the reliability reasons.

“And if that happens, based on the results and findings and analysis from the first five races, but also from the tests in Barcelona, we will be able to have a very, very clear assessment of the situation and more importantly a very clear action plan of what needs to be done.

“The engine is more or less back to where it was at the start of the season, based on reliability fixes that we have introduced with the spec this weekend,” explained Abiteboul. “This weekend has been more balance chasing and dealing with tyres, which I think has been a problem across the grid.

“It is absolutely not an excuse. It is another problem that we need to face and the test in Barcelona this week is going to address that specific issue. So reliability addressed, engine performance is now covered but we need a better understanding of what is needed on the chassis side to get those tyres to work, which in my opinion is now damaging us, so that will be the short term fix.

“But medium to long term, we need to do things differently because clearly what we are doing is not working in order to reduce the gap to the top teams. That is more of a long-term target, but that is not a reason why we should not be assessing and taking steps now.”

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