The Renault F1 Team today marked the beginning of the British Motor Show with a special demonstration run in the heart of Whitehall, in the presence of Prime Minister Tony Blair. With Damon Hill at the wheel, the world championship-winning Renault...
The Renault F1 Team today marked the beginning of the British Motor Show with a special demonstration run in the heart of Whitehall, in the presence of Prime Minister Tony Blair. With Damon Hill at the wheel, the world championship-winning Renault F1 R25 gave a short demonstration run in front of Mr Blair ahead of a reception to mark the official opening of the British Motor Show.
This special F1 demonstration marks the opening of the 2006 British Motor Show, which this year returns to London for the first time in 30 years, and preceded an evening reception for senior figures from the British motor industry at Number 10 Downing Street. Damon Hill is Britain's most recent world champion, and won his title a decade ago at the wheel of a Renault-powered Williams. Now President of the BRDC (British Racing Drivers' Club), Damon was a natural choice to drive the car on this occasion - and he was delighted with the experience.
"This was only a small demo of the car, but I am proud to have taken part in this unique project," enthused Damon as he stepped from Fernando Alonso's 2005 World Championship-winning car. "The motorsport industry is among the crown jewels of Britain's high-technology sector, and the level of expertise that we see in Formula 1 is the pinnacle. To have a Formula 1 car running in the heart of Whitehall, in the presence of the Prime Minister, is the most dramatic way possible of highlighting Britain's standing in one of the most challenging sporting disciplines in the world."
The Renault F1 Team R25 chassis -- and its current R26 racer -- are the fruit of a truly international collaboration. Every Renault F1 car beats with a French heart, courtesy of the high-performance engines designed and developed at Viry-Chatillon, Paris. But the team has assembled an international network of expertise in order to achieve championship-winning success. It was with this in mind that it established its chassis design and manufacturing operation in Enstone, Oxfordshire -- employing over 500 people within the 'Motorsport Valley' that centres on the Silverstone Grand Prix circuit.
"Formula 1 is a truly global sport and to be successful, you need the very best there is to offer," continued Hill. "Renault has an international outlook, and they recognised that Britain has unique expertise in this sector. Their willingness to assemble the skills they need to win, while maintaining their identity as a distinctively French company, has been a key factor in the success they are now enjoying."