Verstappen joins Ricciardo in taking Renault's Spec C
Max Verstappen has joined teammate Daniel Ricciardo in fitting the new Renault Spec C engine at Monza, as Red Bull said the upgrade "delivered what was predicted".
Ricciardo took a complete set of new power unit elements on Friday, earning himself a spot on the back row.
After a promising initial outing, the team has now followed up on its plan to give Max Verstappen a new V6 on Saturday. It’s only the third of the year for the Dutchman, so he doesn’t face a penalty.
It’s understood that on the Renault dyno the Spec C performed better with RBR’s ExxonMobil fuel than it did with the works team’s own.
The Enstone outfit has elected not to use it because of reliability concerns, and the need to focus on its quest for fourth place in the world championship.
“It seems to have delivered what was predicted, so that’s encouraging,” Horner told Motorsport.com.
“Hopefully it’ll run cleanly for the rest of the weekend. It doesn’t appear to be an issue on our fuel, where I think it may be on Renault’s fuel.
"Obviously if there’s any potential advantage, you’ve got to go for it.”
Renault F1 boss Cyril Abiteboul has stressed that there are reliability risks associated with the new spec, and has expressed concerns about a failure leading to more criticism from the Red Bull management.
Horner said: “If there’s any performance on the table, of course we’re going to go for it, taking into account the risks that are associated with it.”
Red Bull motorsport boss Helmut Marko also downplayed such concerns.
“They didn’t tell us about the risk with Spec B, and we had a risk!” he told Motorsport.com. “It’s an improvement. It looks good so far.”
Horner confirmed that both Ricciardo and Verstappen will face further penalties in 2018.
“For sure both of them have got at least one further grid drop before the end of the year,” he stated.
Along with Verstappen, the other new V6 deployed this morning was the Ferrari in Marcus Ericsson’s Sauber, following his crash yesterday.
It’s the fourth of the season, so he has earned a 10-place grid penalty.
Marcus Ericsson, Sauber C37
Photo by: Mark Sutton / Sutton Images
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|Drivers||Marcus Ericsson , Max Verstappen Shop Now|
|Teams||Red Bull Racing Shop Now , Sauber|