Formula 1
Formula 1
28 Mar
Event finished
R
Emilia Romagna GP
18 Apr
FP1 in
2 days
R
Portuguese GP
02 May
FP1 in
16 days
09 May
Next event in
21 days
23 May
Race in
39 days
R
Azerbaijan GP
06 Jun
Race in
53 days
13 Jun
Race in
60 days
27 Jun
Race in
74 days
04 Jul
Next event in
77 days
18 Jul
Race in
95 days
R
Hungarian GP
01 Aug
Race in
109 days
29 Aug
Race in
137 days
05 Sep
Race in
144 days
26 Sep
Race in
165 days
R
Singapore GP
03 Oct
Next event in
168 days
10 Oct
Race in
179 days
R
United States GP
24 Oct
Race in
193 days
31 Oct
Race in
200 days
R
Australian GP
21 Nov
Race in
221 days
R
Abu Dhabi GP
12 Dec
Race in
242 days

Renault drivers didn't notice new qualifying engine mode

Renault's Formula 1 drivers have played down the impact of the new high-power engine mode used in qualifying for the Austrian Grand Prix.

Renault drivers didn't notice new qualifying engine mode
Nico Hulkenberg, Renault Sport F1 Team R.S. 18
Nico Hulkenberg, Renault Sport F1 Team R.S. 18
Nico Hulkenberg, Renault Sport F1 Team R.S. 18 sparks
Carlos Sainz Jr., Renault Sport F1 Team R.S. 18
Nico Hulkenberg, Renault Sport F1 Team R.S. 18
Nico Hulkenberg, Renault Sport F1 Team R.S. 18 sparks
Carlos Sainz Jr., Renault Sport F1 Team R.S. 18
Nico Hulkenberg, Renault Sport F1 Team R.S. 18

The new mode was tested in France last week and Renault F1 boss Cyril Abiteboul said it was "great news" that it would be "making an impact for the first time" at the Red Bull Ring.

After filling the fifth row of the grid, well beaten by the Haas team, drivers Carlos Sainz and Nico Hulkenberg said it made little difference to their qualifying performance.

Hulkenberg lapped three tenths slower than his teammate and said "you don't notice a bit more performance" like a qualifying mode.

"Something more significant needs to happen, so that it can be noticed," he said. "I don't even know what you're thinking, or what you've been told, what we've got.

"That's not earth-shattering, I can tell you that much."

Asked by Motorsport.com if he had used the new mode, Sainz said: "Yeah, but everyone has qualifying modes.

"Once you arrive to qualifying, yes it's a bit of performance, but we were certainly very far away from Haas to feel any kind of qualifying mode advantage."

Further up the order, Renault customer team Red Bull lagged 0.7s behind Mercedes and Ferrari despite this circuit offering a short 63-second lap in qualifying.

Daniel Ricciardo was even beaten to sixth on the grid by the Haas of Romain Grosjean.

Renault's chief technical officer Bob Bell had already warned after Friday practice that he would not "describe our qualifying opportunities as a party mode, probably not quite in the same league as previously run at other engine manufacturers".

He added: "We have some improvements to the engine that come on as a race-by-race basis.

"We are always finding new ways with these engines to operate them, to get a little bit more performance. Renault have been a little bit behind the curve on that but we are starting to pick it up now.

"We have a small improvement but it is not night and day stuff."

Bell said Renault would be refining its higher-power modes over the course of the season.

"There are some modes that we can develop over the course of the season that will be available to us on all laps, some you might only want for two or three laps and you will only use them in qualifying," he explained.

"Those limitations can themselves change over the course of the season.

"As we get more confidence in a new operating mode, as we get more validation data from the track, we may open up the mileage restrictions on them.

"So we may start conservative and then open the window up."

Additional reporting by Adam Cooper and Maria Reyer

shares
comments
Austrian GP: Post-qualifying press conference

Previous article

Austrian GP: Post-qualifying press conference

Next article

Deja vu? Bottas edges Hamilton to Austrian F1 GP pole as Bulls squabble

Deja vu? Bottas edges Hamilton to Austrian F1 GP pole as Bulls squabble
Load comments

About this article

Series Formula 1
Event Austrian GP
Location Red Bull Ring
Teams Renault F1 Team
Author Scott Mitchell
The themes to watch in F1's Imola return Prime

The themes to watch in F1's Imola return

Three weeks is a long time in Formula 1, but in the reshaped start to the 2021 season the teams head to Imola to pick things up after the frenetic Bahrain opener. Here's what to look out for and the developments to follow at the Emilia Romagna Grand Prix

The 'new' F1 drivers who need to improve at Imola Prime

The 'new' F1 drivers who need to improve at Imola

After a pandemic-hit winter of seat-swapping, F1 kicked off its season with several new faces in town, other drivers adapting to new environments, and one making a much-anticipated comeback. Ben Anderson looks at who made the most of their opportunity and who needs to try harder…

Formula 1
Apr 12, 2021
The delay that quashed Aston Martin’s last F1 venture Prime

The delay that quashed Aston Martin’s last F1 venture

Aston Martin’s only previous foray into Formula 1 in the late 1950s was a short-lived and unsuccessful affair. But it could have been so different, says Nigel Roebuck.

Formula 1
Apr 10, 2021
Verstappen exclusive: Why lack of titles won't hurt Red Bull's ace Prime

Verstappen exclusive: Why lack of titles won't hurt Red Bull's ace

Max Verstappen’s star quality in Formula 1 is clear. Now equipped with a Red Bull car that is, right now, the world title favourite and the experience to support his talent, could 2021 be the Dutchman’s year to topple the dominant force of Lewis Hamilton and Mercedes?

Formula 1
Apr 9, 2021
Is Formula 1 as good as it has ever been now? Prime

Is Formula 1 as good as it has ever been now?

For many, many years Formula 1 has strived to do and to be better on all fronts. With close competition, a growing fanbase, a stable political landscape and rules in place to encourage sustainability, 2021 is on course to provide an unexpected peak

Formula 1
Apr 8, 2021
How Williams’ new structure adheres to a growing F1 trend Prime

How Williams’ new structure adheres to a growing F1 trend

Williams held out against the tide for many years but, as MARK GALLAGHER explains, the age of the owner-manager is long gone

Formula 1
Apr 6, 2021
When a journeyman driver's F1 career lasted just 800m Prime

When a journeyman driver's F1 career lasted just 800m

Nikita Mazepin’s Formula 1 debut at the Bahrain Grand Prix lasted mere corners before he wiped himself out in a shunt, but his financial backing affords him a full season. Back in 1993 though, Marco Apicella was an F1 driver for just 800m before a first corner fracas ended his career. Here’s the story of his very short time at motorsport’s pinnacle.

Formula 1
Apr 4, 2021
How Raikkonen's rapid rise stalled his teammate's F1 career climb Prime

How Raikkonen's rapid rise stalled his teammate's F1 career climb

Kimi Raikkonen's emergence as a Formula 1 star in his rookie campaign remains one of the legendary storylines from 2001, but his exploits had an unwanted impact on his Sauber teammate's own prospects. Twenty years on from his first F1 podium at the Brazilian GP, here's how Nick Heidfeld's career was chilled by the Iceman.

Formula 1
Apr 3, 2021