Renault ‘positive’ For British GP
Renault are adamant they head to Silverstone for this weekend’s British Grand Prix with “a clean slate” following criticism by Red Bull team principal Christian Horner.
Horner was far from complimentary of Renault after watching Sebastian Vettel retire for the third time this season during the Austrian Grand Prix 10 days ago.
The reigning four-times champion initially sustained an electrical fault on lap two, which led to him pulling off track and almost stopping, only for the problem to rectify itself.
By the time Vettel did get going again, the German – who turns 27 on Thursday – found himself a lap down and out of the hunt for points.
An on-track incident later in the race dropped Vettel further adrift, resulting in the team’s decision to withdraw him after 34 laps to save the car.
Horner, described Renault’s performance this year as “unacceptable”, and suggested the power-unit manufacturer were six months behind Mercedes in terms of development.
Renault Sport F1 head of track operations Remi Taffin is confident there will be no repeat of the incident in Austria, and Red Bull can take the fight to their rivals.
“We are going there in a positive frame of mind,” Taffin said.
“It’s fair to say Austria was frustrating and disappointing, but we’ve looked at every scenario in a very detailed manner and are confident the failures won’t happen again.”
Following Australian racer Daniel Ricciardo’s win in Canada in June, Red Bull and Renault thought they were back on track.
But Austria showed Renault have a way to go. Ricciardo is a lowly eighth and 43 seconds back from winner Rosberg, primarily due to a lack of straight-line speed compared with Mercedes.
Ricciardo concedes the situation is a frustrating one for all at Red Bull: “It is hard because a lot of it (lack of power) happens on the straight and there is no skill required on the straight.
“It is throwing talent away for nothing. Don’t get me wrong, anyone can hop in the car and if you are not scared to go 300km/h, you can easily go flat out on the straight, so it is giving away time for nothing, which is the frustrating part.
“I guess from their side, they spent time, hours, money, on designing a fast car through the corners, yet it just gets washed away on the straights, so that is frustrating, but it is what it is.
“But I have faith we can turn it around. This year is getting away from us, but for 2015 I have faith things will definitely improve.”