Friday, 19 September 2014

Four Renault powered cars in the top ten on Friday despite power unit failure for Vettel

Renault Sport F1 Singapore Grand Prix Practice Report
(Renault Sport F1)

Reigning world champion Sebastian Vettel driving the Infiniti Red Bull Racing RB10 had a difficult start to his Singapore Grand Prix weekend as the German suffered a power unit failure right at the end of Free Practice One on Friday in Singapore which meant that the quadruple world champion missed all but ten minutes of the second session on Friday.

Despite his issues on Friday, Vettel still managed to finish FP2 in fifth place behind Lewis Hamilton Hamilton, Fernando Alonso, Red Bull team mate Daniel Ricciardo and Kimi Raikkonen in the second Ferrari.

The Toro Rosso Team did a great job to finish the day in 10th and 11th place respectively. Both the Lotus and Caterham F1 Team's managed to carry out good mileage with their power units. Speaking about Friday's track action Renault Head of Track Operations Remi Taffin commented:

'Performance was positive today, particularly in FP2 when we saw Daniel [Ricciardo] just three tenths from the front. It’s a lot closer than previous events and sets a minimum benchmark for the rest of the weekend. We were confident coming into the weekend that the corners and tight hairpins of Marina Bay would suit us a lot more than the previous two tracks as the advances we have made in driveability have taken us in a good direction. That said, we have to continue to optimize energy management tomorrow so we can push even more from the strategy, and potentially close the gap even further.

While performance has been overall pretty good, with three cars in the top 10 in FP2, we’ve got some work to do on reliability. We had an energy store problem on JEV’s car in FP1 – it seems to be an isolated problem but it’s one we need to get to the bottom of as it’s not the first time it has happened. We also had a problem with the ICE on Sebastian’s car – the oil pressure dropped suddenly at the end of FP1 – and we have to understand why it happened. We will look in more detail at Viry. For now we’ve now changed to the PU that was scheduled for use for the rest of the weekend and will focus fully on the amended run plan tomorrow. Thanks to the guys in the garage who succeeded in changing a PU within three hours.

© Ben Johnston 2014

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