Friday, 31 October 2014

Renault Sport F1 Friday report United States Grand Prix - Circuit of the Americas Austin

United States Grand Prix
(Renault Sport F1)

Renault Sport F1's teams had a mixed opening day at the Circuit of the Americas on Friday as the on track action got underway ahead of Sunday's United States Grand Prix. In the opening session Toro Rosso's Daniil Kvyat completed 33 laps on his way to fourth place in the time-sheets while reigning world champion Sebastian Vettel was 7th fastest. His team mate Daniel Ricciardo had an Energy Recovery System issue and ended the first session in 17th place having completed just 5 laps.

The Lotus F1 Team endured a difficult day. In the first session Romain Grosjean finished the session in 18th place while Pastor Maldonado finished the session in 13th place while in the second session Romain Grosjean was 12th fastest while Pastor Maldonado finished the session in 15th place.

Over the course of Friday, Renault powered teams completed 299 laps over the course of Free Practice 1 and Free Practice 2.

Speaking following today's running head of track operations at Renault Sport F1 Remi Taffin stated:

'Today went reasonably well even if we had a few problems to contend with. Getting enough mileage under your belt is really important for validating the pre-GP simulation data, so having both Red Bull drivers miss chunks of FP1 and FP2 wasn’t ideal. In the morning we elected to change Daniel Ricciardo’s MGU-K with one eye on the afternoon, and that certainly proved the correct decision. Not only did he rack up plenty of laps but he was also quick. Sebastian Vettel is using his sixth PU here and will start Sunday’s race from the pit-lane. 

He’d therefore chosen to focus on race strategy but was compromised by a gearbox problem. We have work to do overnight, but Daniel’s data will certainly help a lot.
Toro Rosso again look in good shape this weekend and had no problems at all with their PUs. That meant they could complete plenty of laps and optimise their set-up. Daniil Kvyat repeated his Sochi practice form by getting into the top-10 in both sessions, which is important here as a number of big names could go out in the first part of a revised qualifying format.

There were also encouraging signs for Lotus, with Romain Grosjean finishing FP2 12th and just a couple of seconds off the overall pace. If one or both of those cars makes it into Q2 tomorrow I think they’ll have done a decent job.'

© Ben Johnston 2014

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