Nico Hülkenberg took over the RS17 from Renault Sport Formula 1 Team team-mate Jolyon Palmer for the afternoon session on day one at the Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya on Tuesday, and completed 58 laps in setting the seventh fastest time.
The German was able to take advantage of a new power unit after Palmer was restricted to just 15 laps in the morning, and felt it was a useful day of understanding the new car.
“I had a decent run and we were able to complete a pretty much full afternoon programme today,” said Hülkenberg. “Certainly, you could feel that it was quite windy at times out there and that does affect the feel of the car.
“We gained some further understanding of set-up and tyres and have plenty to consider before we head out again tomorrow.”
Palmer was disappointed to lose out on that useful track time with the engine issue, finishing bottom of the time sheets as a result, and hopes that the final three days of testing can be better for both himself and Renault.
“Today I had a short morning before we had to stop for a precautionary power unit change,” said Palmer. “It wasn’t ideal but it’s certainly a long way from being the end of the world.
“We’re still in a good position and I feel confident for the season ahead. For sure, it would be nice to get some more laps and you never want to lose track time. We have another three days left of this test and I’m looking forward to getting some more laps on the board.”