Renault to test B-spec engine at Barcelona

Renault plans to test its new B-spec engine for the first time at Barcelona after the Spanish Grand Prix, the French car manufacturer revealed on Friday.

Renault to test B-spec engine at Barcelona
Kevin Magnussen, Renault Sport F1 Team RS16 leads team mate Jolyon Palmer, Renault Sport F1 Team RS16
Daniel Ricciardo, Red Bull Racing RB12
Daniel Ricciardo, Red Bull Racing RB12
Kevin Magnussen, Renault Sport F1 Team and Jolyon Palmer, Renault Sport F1 Team as the grid observes the national anthem
Jolyon Palmer, Renault Sport F1 Team RS16
Kevin Magnussen, Renault Sport F1 Team RS16 on the grid
Kevin Magnussen, Renault Sport F1 Team RS16 leads team mate Jolyon Palmer, Renault Sport F1 Team RS16
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The updated engine has lifted hopes that Red Bull and the works Renault team can enjoy a stronger second half to the campaign after its planned introduction at the Canadian Grand Prix.

With Renault confident it will even allow Red Bull to challenge Ferrari regularly, the first run at Barcelona could deliver a clear indication of just how much progress can be expected.

Renault is currently on schedule to get the B-spec engine ready for the Barcelona test, but is aware that unforeseen delays in its preparations could yet force it to change plans.

Motorsport.com understands that Renault is also pushing hard to get two versions of the new engine ready for the Barcelona test, so that both its work teams and Red Bull can run it.

Full test

Renault also wants to evaluate a number of updates to its car at the Barcelona test.

Chassis technical director Nick Chester said: “For the [Spanish] race we have an updated rear wing as well as some updates for the front wing.

“For the test we have a full raft of things to try; new suspension, further aero updates over various areas of the car, some mods to cooling as well as evaluating the B-spec power unit, so we should have a full two days.”

Crunch race

Renault F1 managing director Cyril Abiteboul says that the Spanish Grand Prix marks an important milestone for the team, as it looks to build on its points from Russia.

“Getting points in Russia was a good fillip for the team after the tough race in China,” he explained.

“We were reliable and competitive enough to out-race our closest competition and that took a lot of hard work. That said, we acknowledge it took a cocktail of circumstances and repeating the result in Spain would be tough.

“However, Barcelona is the start of our development program and we will see some new developments coming through in the race, with several others scheduled for the test afterwards.

“We look at this race as a marker in the sand: the exit point of our recovery from the takeover and the first race as ‘our’ team. It will start small, but I’m confident we will gain momentum as we go forward.”

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