Renault looking to "exploit set-up envelope" at Silverstone
Nico Hulkenberg says that the Renault Formula 1 team is trying a different starting point on set-up at Silverstone as it tries to get to the bottom of its recent loss of form.
Hulkenberg and teammate Daniel Ricciardo will run different set-ups in Friday practice as the team tries to confirm that it has found some solutions, even though the two cars are mechanically identical and no new parts have been introduced this weekend.
“No updates,” said Hulkenberg when asked by Motorsport.com. “But we’re trying different stuff with the set-up, how we run the car compared to previous weeks, a different starting point, but also different across the cars, to cover a lot of bases.
“We’re trying to exploit more of the set-up envelope in the car. We’re going to something that we haven’t run basically so far this year. No new bits, just the set-up is different.”
Renault executive director Marcin Budkowski believes that the team has got a handle on its problems, and that Silverstone will confirm that.
“We’re investigating a few directions,” he told Motorsport.com. “I think we have an understanding of where we have a few issues, and where it needs a little bit of experimenting to confirm that direction of development.”
Hulkenberg believes that the team’s poor race in Austria was a one-off, and not indicative of what will happen this weekend.
“I think Austria was a bit more extreme than just being at the back of the midfield,” said the German. “We had some issues and problems there we’ve never really faced this season before, so that was a bit exceptional and a bit out of the ordinary.
“A little bit somewhat also still unexplained. It’s a little bit of a funny feeling there, because every year that I’ve been with Renault there something with our car and that track doesn’t fit well, and doesn’t work. I’m quite hopeful that it was a bit track related and things are a bit back to normality here.”
Asked if every track is in effect a re-set this year he added: “It shouldn’t be, and normally not what I felt up to that point this year. OK, there’s a little some swing, and there’s some track specific competitiveness, but Austria was a bit extreme.”
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