Comments from the Renault team ahead of the United States Grand Prix
"Indianapolis is a special place to visit - it is famous as the home of one of the most important races in the world, and it has the same reputation as Monaco does for us in Europe."
"It is not a particularly technical circuit - it is very slippery, and downforce levels are quite low. In terms of set-up, we try and get good speeds down the main straight, and then work hard on the mechanical grip of the car in the slow corners to allow us to take off downforce for straight-line speed."
"We have to hope we stay competitive, as we were in Canada. Although I was disappointed to retire, we can feel the team has built up some momentum in recent races, and I hope we can continue that in the USA." The team was very strong last weekend, and in 2003, our package performed very well. This may turn out to be a nice circuit for us."
"To be honest, we were quite surprised by our competitiveness in Canada, and that certainly makes us hopeful we can be strong in Indy."
"On paper, Indianapolis is not our best circuit, so we need to be cautious making predictions. However, the R23 was actually quite strong there last year, and as a team, we have been very strong in the last three or four races. So there is no reason to be optimistic."
"Our reliability this season has been excellent, and I think the failures in Montreal were probably more bad luck than anything else. I would expect things to be back to normal on that front for Indy."
"The circuit itself is strange - you have to find the right compromise between the two different halves. It has similar downforce levels to Canada, and we were very quick there. So maybe we can be as well in Indy. I'm looking forward to a good race."
Pat Symonds: Executive director of engineering:
"Looking ahead, there is no reason to think the team will not be strong at Indianapolis. The circuit essentially demands good top speed down the straight, and then plenty of grip through the slow corners and under traction."
"In those respects, it is quite similar to Montreal, and we demonstrated there that we could run with competitive top speeds, while still performing well during the traction events exiting the slow corners. Equally, the cars operate well in slow corners with low downforce."
"Obviously, we were bitterly disappointed to have experienced our first double retirement of the year in Canada, as I felt we lost the opportunity for our best result of the year. Without his car failure and the delay at his first stop, Fernando could well have led the race from Michael to the end, while we can only assume Jarno would have performed better thanks to his higher grid position."
"But what might have been does not count in motor racing. We are confident that the problems experienced in Canada will be resolved for next weekend. Consequently, the team will be looking to re-establish our reliability record and translate our current good form into a strong haul of championship points."