Technical Issues Hurt Both of Palmer’s Friday Practice Sessions

Credit: Octane Photographic Ltd

Hoping to build on a strong Austrian Grand Prix, mechanical issues cut Jolyon Palmer’s running in each of the Friday free practice sessions in preparation for his home grand prix at Silverstone.

Palmer suffered from a MGU-K issue early on in the first of the two practice sessions, before having to cut short his race simulations in the second session with a clutch problem.

Despite the interruptions, Palmer still managed to collect 41 laps across both sessions, setting the eighteenth fastest times in both FP1 and FP2.

“I missed half the morning with an MGU-K shaft that needed replacing,” said Palmer, “but when I did get some running in I was pretty happy with the car.

“The afternoon started okay and I was happy with the car on the Soft tyres, but when I put on the Supersoft tyres I found there wasn’t any grip. I had a spin and then struggled to get them working correctly.

“Unfortunately then we had to stop the car on a long run with a clutch problem. We will hope for better luck tomorrow!”

Renault Sport Formula One Team stablemate Nico Hulkenberg enjoyed better luck in both sessions, finishing seventh fastest in FP2 with a best time of 1:29.936s.

Hulkenberg did some running on a brand new floor design in the second session, which the German hopes will aid Renault’s ascent up the order.

“We had two okay sessions with no major issues today,” said Hulkenberg.  “Amongst the work accomplished was the running of a new floor this afternoon. We now need to analyse and see what it has done for us.

“Regarding the pace, we need to do some work to find a bit more balance and performance overall, especially in the long runs. This means a bit of preparation work for us between now and tomorrow’s qualifying, but I’m looking forward to it.”

Renault’s Chief Technical Officer Bob Bell was impressed with Hulkenberg’s pace, but he rued the loss of track time for Palmer.

“He set a good time on low fuel, which we hope we can reproduce in qualifying,” said Bell.  “Jo had a slightly less fortunate day with his clutch problem in the afternoon, on top of the mechanical issue in the morning, and never got a fair crack at a time.

“Overall for the team, I think we have had a productive day and look forward to qualifying tomorrow.”