Team Principal of the Renault F1 Team, Cyril Abiteboul, has described the German Grand Prix at the Hockenheimring at the weekend as “an emotional rollercoaster”, after both drivers were forced to retire.
It was an abysmal weekend for both drivers, Daniel Ricciardo and Nico Hülkenberg, who started in ninth and thirteenth positions respectively, with Hülkenberg’s DNF being caused by a spin and the resulting crash, and Ricciardo’s due to an exhaust failure.
“It was an emotional rollercoaster today with highs and lows. Unfortunately, we’re finishing on a low with two retirements,” said Abiteboul.
“Daniel’s was caused by an exhaust leak and we need to look into the problem, which is our first reliability glitch in a while.”
Hülkenberg’s retirement in particular caused the team angst as he had been driving exceptionally well up until that point.
“Nico had been driving an amazing race and was supported by decisions from the pit wall and good execution by the pit crew. We made the call not to put dry tyres on too early and made up a lot of positions to second. The final corner looked tricky all day and Nico could not save the car from the wall.
“It’s difficult to take as it was an exciting race and we’d have liked to have been part of it until the end.”
Abiteboul added that the retirements were a disappointment as they lost the opportunity to fight with their competitors for points. He is nonetheless determined that the team push forward in the face of adversity, trying to fight for points once more at the Hungarian Grand Prix this coming weekend, which is the last race before the summer break.
“We missed an opportunity for big points over our direct competitors, but there are certainly positives from the weekend. We want to taste being higher on merit more regularly. It doesn’t deter from our focus of pushing on and building a more competitive car.” he said.