Daniel Ricciardo, Red Bull, Bahrain International Circuit, 2018

Ricciardo already expecting power unit penalty after Bahrain retirement

2018 Chinese Grand Prix

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Daniel Ricciardo expects to face a grid penalty later this year following the failure of one of his two batteries for the season.

The Red Bull driver’s retirement in Bahrain was caused by a failed energy store in his Renault power unit which the team has now replaced. Ricciardo believes the old one cannot be re-used.

“We’ve got a second one here,” he said. “I think if they do it again we have a penalty. Two have to last a year. One is already, I believe, in the bin.”

Ricciardo could avoid a penalty by using his new one for the rest of the season, but he believes that is unlikely. “We only survived doing one [battery] for one race,” he said.

“It’s more likely than not we’ll have a penalty, but hopefully it’s happening later. So it’s the second one, 90% sure.”

However Valtteri Bottas has had good news about the state of his energy store and control electronics which were replaced following his crash in Australia. Following inspection Mercedes ran the parts again during practice in Bahrain. The team intends to run it in further practice sessions before returning it to use in a race scenario.

Power unit components used after Bahrain Grand Prix

No. Car Engine Driver ICE TC MGU-H MGU-K ES CE
26 Toro Rosso Honda Pierre Gasly 2 2 2 1 1 1
55 Toro Rosso Honda Brendon Hartley 1 2 2 1 1 1
20 Haas Ferrari Kevin Magnussen 1 1 1 1 2 2
77 Mercedes Mercedes Valtteri Bottas 1 1 1 1 2 2
3 Red Bull TAG Heuer Daniel Ricciardo 1 1 1 1 1 2
2 McLaren Renault Stoffel Vandoorne 1 1 1 1 1 1
14 McLaren Renault Fernando Alonso 1 1 1 1 1 1
30 Renault Renault Carlos Sainz Jnr 1 1 1 1 1 1
33 Red Bull TAG Heuer Max Verstappen 1 1 1 1 1 1
27 Renault Renault Nico Hulkenberg 1 1 1 1 1 1
5 Ferrari Ferrari Sebastian Vettel 1 1 1 1 1 1
44 Mercedes Mercedes Lewis Hamilton 1 1 1 1 1 1
31 Sauber Ferrari Charles Leclerc 1 1 1 1 1 1
9 Sauber Ferrari Marcus Ericsson 1 1 1 1 1 1
7 Ferrari Ferrari Kimi Raikkonen 1 1 1 1 1 1
8 Haas Ferrari Romain Grosjean 1 1 1 1 1 1
31 Force India Mercedes Esteban Ocon 1 1 1 1 1 1
19 Williams Mercedes Lance Stroll 1 1 1 1 1 1
11 Force India Mercedes Sergio Perez 1 1 1 1 1 1
18 Williams Mercedes Sergey Sitorkin 1 1 1 1 1 1

NB. Ricciardo’s new energy store has not been officially confirmed yet which is why he is on one instead of two.

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Author information

Keith Collantine
Lifelong motor sport fan Keith set up RaceFans in 2005 - when it was originally called F1 Fanatic. Having previously worked as a motoring...

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28 comments on “Ricciardo already expecting power unit penalty after Bahrain retirement”

  1. Ugh.

  2. Isn’t it 3 PUs/components, not 2?

    1. For most components yes, although I believe you only get 2 energy stores.

      1. 2 control electronics and energy stores. 3 ICE’s, Turbos, MGU-K’s and MGU-H’s.

    2. @phylyp

      Article 23.3 a) of the 2018 Sporting Regulations, states: “Unless he drives for more than one team, each driver may use no more than 3 engines (ICE), 3 motor generator units-heat (MGU-H), 3 turbochargers (TC), 2 energy stores (ES), 2 control electronics (CE) and 2 motor generator units-kinetic (MGU-K).

      1. Many thanks for that clarification, @meko1971 @geemac and Racefan14

        1. @phylyp You’re welcome!

      2. @meko1971 If I’m a free to interpret that as I like, does that mean a third driver in a team gets another set of everything as the rule itself states “each driver”? So if I were to introduce Wehrlein back into Sauber at the moment of changing parts I wouldn’t take a penalty because of the third driver. That’s not so much interesting for Mercedes but surely for backmarkers although they’re used to starting at the back anyway?

        1. They’ve covered that in the regs already and is why Hartley started at the back at the end of last year.

          1. Exactly, the parts are allocated to “the car” rather than “the driver”.

          2. In fact, if I recall correctly, with Kvyat moving out of and back in the team at the end of the year, he effectively ended up swapping cars.

  3. Pascal Wehrlein in Sauber again….!?

  4. Massa and Wehrlein still in the championship?

  5. McLaren Honda, Toro Rosso Renault, Pascal Wehrlien. I think the table needs updating @keithcollantine

    1. @geemac – And “Sergey Sitorkin”, which I quite like.

  6. Hakk the rack
    12th April 2018, 13:25

    There’s something wrong with the table, Keith :)

  7. Im guessing they will have to change more stuff so its not so bad. Whatabout Bottas stuff though are they allowed to repair that stuff ur just “check it”.

  8. Both the RB drivers hoped to be in the championship hunt this year. The car does seem capable, while still being an outside chance. But two races in and that dream is over already. Both of them are already too far behind in the championship.

    Dan may have finished on the podium in Bahrain and may have still been in with a sniff without that failure (along with a silly penalty in Melbourne). But almost all hope is gone now. Unfortunately Max seems destined to chase immediate results (Corner by corner) instead of long term gains, so in reality, he was probably never in the hunt to begin with. I honestly half expect him to crash again in China based on his comments and lack of ownership. Maybe he will take out Dan in China and complete the misery for RB over what could have been.

    In any case, it’s already over for both of them and over for RB. That is a shame for them and us. They may try valiantly to recover their losses, but it will all be in vain. 2 races in and this season is already about Vettel Vs Hamilton.

    1. Both of them are already too far behind in the championship.

      Not necessary, we are only two races in this season. A lot can and will happen till number 21.

    2. Think about the 2001 season, ferrari was fighting with mclaren at first, then halfway into the season (around hockenheim, old layout) williams became a legit contender for wins on pace, they weren’t a championship contender cause they came from far back, red bull could do the same this year since they seem fast but things went wrong in the first races.

  9. wack

    I keep feeling the same way about this: it doesn’t feel on the limit.

    1. You are right, Ricciardo is over the limit.

  10. Andrew Purkis
    12th April 2018, 15:27

    this is the Achilles heel of all the teams except the mercs powered cars

    in a 21 race series reliably is key

    and 4 yrs in the others still cant match them and doubtful they will

    so its a Merc WDC/WCC till 2020

    end of

  11. the power unit rules are unnecessarily harsh this year. given that most teams will breach the limit there are not actually going to be any cost savings, through reduced component use. even if the top engine manufacturer (mercedes) thinks they can get a car through on 3 components, they will still have built a few spares.

    what do these rules really do then? they limit development obviously – you can only introduce new parts twice – but that’s not really a massive bonus. it just means we’re more likely to be locked into the performance paradigm we see at the very beginning of the season; there’s no opportunity for teams to claw it back, to converge on performance.

    i thought the 5 component limit seemed ok – we weren’t seeing overuse then, whereas last year honda probably used more engines than they have in any season, despite the stricter rules.

    1. What these rules really do is shuffle the field. I think the purpose is to put some variability into the racing, so the fastest cars is not always on the front row, especially towards the end of the season. Thus, the Red Bull drivers still have a very good chance at making a real show for the WDC. For each race, the rules force a fast driver to start from the mid field, so the fans have the benefit of a driver making their way thru the field.

      1. Yes, and we’ve had a lot of those comeback drives last year, that I can think of: verstappen in china, austin, monza (recovery slowed by puncture), ricciardo in baku, silverstone, monza, brazil, mexico (the few laps before mechanical problem), hamilton in mexico and brazil, vettel in canada, malaysia, mexico, bottas in baku and silverstone (sort of) and raikkonen in japan (self inflicted), obviously helped by ferrari, mercedes and red bull being on another performance category compared to the other teams.

  12. I wonder if Riccairdo starts way back and overtakes 2-3 back-markers at once, if the BBC (Andrew Benson head of Lewis’ fan club) will compare it to Mansell v Piquet again and claimed that he is “stunned”

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