Red Bull Racing driver Daniel Ricciardo took time out from being behind the wheel of a Formula 1 machine, to become a race engineer for the day, when he joined the ExxonMobil trackside team on Thursday in Abu Dhabi.
The Australian received an engineering masterclass from ExxonMobil as he got his hands dirty and learnt the importance that lubricants can play in a race weekend, and how they can give Red Bull an advantage on track.
First up for Ricciardo was a quick session on the technological advantages of lubricants with ExxonMobil Motorsports Technical Advisor, Mike Frost, in the trackside Laboratory.
The lesson included testing a Mobil 1 sample, and understanding the science behind race lubricants and fuels, and the role they have played this season, from producing close qualifying sessions, to how they can help a driver achieve that crucial one place higher on the grid.
Ricciardo thoroughly enjoyed the day, saying it was a great learning experience with some surprising results.
“It was eye-opening to spend some time in the TrackLab and witness first-hand the level of detail that goes into sampling and testing the Mobil 1 race lubricants and Esso Synergy race fuels, during a race weekend.
“The ExxonMobil team’s expertise and dedication is making a measurable difference to our performance on track – they really are an extension of our team.”
At this weekend’s 2017 Abu Dhabi Grand Prix, the careful monitoring of race fuels and lubricants will be more important than ever. The dry, dusty, desert conditions experienced at the Yas Marina Circuit could quite easily penetrate the formulations brought to Abu Dhabi, and preventing any contamination from occurring will be a crucial task for the trackside engineers.
Technology Motorsports Manager, David Tsurusaki, spoke of the Mobil 1 rigorous fuel and lubricant development programme, which has allowed them to make great progress in 2017, alongside Red Bull.
“On and off the track, we have a rigorous development program for our Mobil 1 race lubricants and Esso Synergy race fuels.
“Hand-in-hand with Red Bull Racing we’ve made some great steps this season and we’re confident we can carry this forward into 2018.”