Renault seeking answers after race pace issues in Bahrain

Jolyon Palmer started tenth but finished thirteenth in Bahrain - Credit: Renault Sport Formula 1 Team

Cyril Abiteboul admitted it was disappointing not to translate the qualifying pace of the Renault Sport Formula 1 Team into more than just two points in the Bahrain Grand Prix as the race pace was not as strong on Sunday.

Both Nico Hülkenberg and Jolyon Palmer managed to qualify inside the top ten on Saturday but only the German could remain their on race day, and in doing so scoring the team’s first points of 2017, but Managing Director Abiteboul believes it is important to find the reasons why the pace diminished on Sunday.

“Today we scored our first points with another strong race from Nico,” said Abiteboul. “We may have lost one position relative to the optimum strategy, but the most important aspect for us is to understand why there is such a difference between our Saturday qualifying performance and our Sunday race pace.

“Jo had a more difficult Grand Prix, so we also need to understand in detail why he struggled especially after qualifying in the top ten for the first time yesterday.”

The team stay on in Bahrain this week with the other teams for the first in-season test of the year, and Abiteboul says it is important they learn more about the characteristics of their RS17 on Tuesday and Wednesday.

“Fortunately, this week’s test comes at a perfect time to further our understanding on the issues that are now well identified, as well as to test first major upgrades of a season that will see a lot of progress and improvement,” said Abiteboul.