Daniel Ricciardo, Nico Hulkenberg, Renault F1 livery launch, 2019

“It’s been a good winter”: Ricciardo encouraged by Renault power unit gains

2019 F1 season

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Daniel Ricciardo says he is encouraged by the progress Renault has made during the winter ahead of his first season driving for the team.

The French manufacturer’s power unit performance has lagged behind its rivals during the V6 hybrid turbo era. But Ricciardo, who has joined the team from its former engine customer Red Bull, says the team’s data shows their development programme for the 2019 F1 season has been successful.

“Obviously being pretty deep now in the Renault family I’ve seen numbers and I know it’s not they’re not just saying it to please everyone,” he said at Renault’s 2019 livery presentation at its base in Enstone. “It has been a good winter.”

“[But] race cars are race cars… it’s done a lot of stuff in the dyno but you might put it on-track and then ‘oh, why is it doing that, we didn’t expect that.’ You never really want to put all your eggs in that basket saying ‘this is gonna be sick’.

“So far what they’ve done over the winter, looking at the numbers they’ve done previous years, it’s been a good one. By no means they’re saying it’s going to be better than a Mercedes or something but for what they’ve done it has been very positive. It’s nice to hear that, for sure.”

Ricciardo said the important next step for the team is to ensure the car is reliable during testing.

“Normally testing I feel you leave testing happier with higher lap count than [fast] lap time. That’s a big one, the reliability, because also it’s hard to develop without reliability.

“When things are always going wrong it’s hard to start putting more powerful parts on if they’re blowing up. The lap count will be a big one for us and hopefully we can kick on with that.”

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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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10 comments on ““It’s been a good winter”: Ricciardo encouraged by Renault power unit gains”

  1. Very excited for this year. I think Renault has a lot of potential, signing such a great talent to pair with Hulk only makes it better. I hope they are closer to the top 3

  2. It’s good to hear encouraging comments like these from Daniel. It used to be said that it was easier to make a fast car reliable than it was to make a reliable car fast, so his comment on having a good reliable foundation for the season is not only an interesting reversal of the old adage, but it sounds a sensible one too. Of course, I’m hoping the lap times show the car is fast as well.

  3. Has the Hulk lost his voice or something, haven’t seen or heard one quote from him all day which is strange!

    1. He’s just concentraring, focusing on his next victim ;-)))

  4. Renault are doomed. They are under investing in the hope that the cost cap comes in, while the only person from Renault keen on F1 is behind bars.

    I give them another 3 to 4 years. Once they realise the cost cap won’t be implemented the way they want, they’ll wind back operations.

    1. @guybrushthreepwood That person isn’t a Renault employee anymore, though.

  5. looking at the numbers they’ve done previous years, it’s been a good one.

    Carlos Ghosn was very good with numbers to.
    I already feel sorry for Danny. lets hope Renault can deliver next year.

    1. lets hope Renault can deliver next year.

      Neither Renault or Ricciardo have said anything different, they are after improvement over 2018 that’s it. Beating Merc or Ferrari and winning is not being looked at as a high possibility, but scoring the odd podium is hopefully within their reach.

      1. Magnus Rubensson (@)
        13th February 2019, 8:13

        If the Renault proves reliable and relatively fast I can see them beating Red Bull in 2019. Both Renault cars can be expected to finish most races in the points.

        Verstappen and Gasly are both seriously fast but I’m not sure whether both of them will manage to finish every race…

        Red Bull may also be more prone to put most resources into the Verstappen car. I sense the Renaults will be more evenly matched overall.

  6. To quote a rather appropriate comment from many years ago – “He would say that, wouldn’t he?”

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