F1 2019 Spanish Grand Prix: Ricciardo Aims to Attone for Baku Blunder
Renault F1 Team previews the fifth race weekend of the 2019 FIA Formula 1 World Championship, the Emirates Spanish Grand Prix. Drivers Nico Hülkenberg and Daniel Ricciardo share their thoughts on the challenges of the Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya, while Cyril Abiteboul and Chassis Technical Director Nick Chester give the latest on the team and on the 2019 package.
Cyril Abiteboul, Team Principal:
“The start of the European segment of the 2019 Formula 1 season is an opportunity for us to reset. Overall, it’s been a tough start to the year and the Azerbaijan Grand Prix capped off a run of results that fell short of our expectations. We know we are capable of much more and we need to target clean weekends and races to make the most of our potential. To do so, we have work to do on all sides of our operation; chassis and engine on and off track, and work with the drivers to allow them to reach their respective capacities. We are motivated as ever to strive for more and we aim for a full recovery in competitiveness in Spain.”
Nick Chester, Chassis Technical Director:
“Barcelona is a very familiar track for Formula 1 teams with all the pre-season testing conducted there in recent years. It’s a combination of high-speed and low-speed corners and short and long straights, so you get a full range of conditions to see how the car operates. Turns 3 and 10 are very fast nowadays, but there’s also some slow stuff to get right towards the end of the lap in the tighter sector three. We have the harder compounds of tyre available for Spain and we’re going from a circuit with the lowest energy input into the tyres to the highest. We will have to consider car balance and how we protect the tyres.”
“We rack up a lot of laps at Barcelona year on year, so it’s a place we are all very familiar with. It’s a layout I like with a lot of high-speed corners including Turns 3 and 10, which are especially quick. Barcelona is actually a very physical circuit, and you usually feel the aches in your neck after the race! We had a productive winter test there earlier in the year so we’ll be looking to build on that circuit knowledge and put in a good result throughout the weekend.”
“The Spanish Grand Prix is always an exciting time of the year as it’s the first European round of the season. Barcelona is a fun circuit, we all know it very well from all the winter and in-season testing. It’s a circuit I’ve always enjoyed racing at in my career: I won there in Formula Renault 3.5 and in recent years have been on the podium. We’ll be targeting a clean weekend right from the off on Friday and hopefully, come away with some points in the bag.”