Renault

Formula 1 Team reports for the 2010 F1 season includes race previews, reports and reviews

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Renault

Postby Tim » Wed Jan 06, 2010 1:01 pm

Eric Boullier joins Renault F1 Team as Team Principal

The Renault F1 Team is delighted to announce the appointment of Eric Boullier as Team Principal with immediate effect.

With an engineering background, Eric Boullier joins Renault with a wealth of motorsport experience. Having started as a race engineer ten years ago, he moved into management with Team DAMS as Managing Director in 2003 and oversaw their racing operations in various categories including the GP2 Series. The 36-year-old Frenchman also acted as Team Principal for Team France in the A1GP Series between 2007 and 2009.

Speaking at the announcement, Eric Boullier commented: "I am incredibly proud to be joining the Renault F1 Team as Team Principal. Renault is one of the most famous and successful names in motorsport and I look forward to leading the team into the new season. In the past Renault has demonstrated that it is one of the top teams in Formula One and I am sure that with hard work and determination we can challenge at the front once again."

A selection of photos of Eric Boullier are available for download from our media website: http://renault.latphoto.co.uk/


Eric Boullier key dates
2009 : Gravity Sport Management, CEO
2003-09 : Team DAMS, Managing and Technical Director (GP2 Series, GP2 Asia, FRV6, Formula BMW Europe, Formula Le Mans). Winning Team in GP2 Asia, FRV6 and Formula Le Mans.
2007-09 : A1 Team France, Team Principal. Winning Team in 2007-08.
2002 : Racing Engineering, Chief Engineer (World Series by Renault) Winning Team in 2002
1999-2001 : Team DAMS, Race Engineer (F3000, official team Cadillac 24H du Mans)
1999 : IPSA (Institut Polytechnique des Sciences Avancées), diploma.

Eric Boullier: "Getting the team back on track"

In what frame of mind was the team when you arrived?
EB : When I started in the job it quickly became clear that the staff's morale had been affected by the end of the 2009 season and that the last few weeks had been quite challenging. However, the team is now very motivated thanks to the new philosophy that the Renault F1 Team wants to implement and, when it was presented at the factory shortly before Christmas, it was welcomed with applause. Everyone is now refreshed and ready for action.

What will be your day-to-day responsibilities?
EB : I will concentrate solely on the sporting and performance aspects. Bob Bell will oversee the Design Office, Production and the technical development of the car. We have already had a lot of discussions and we think in the same way. I think that we will work well together.

Are you a representative of the new strategic partners of the team?
EB : I have been appointed by Renault F1 Team who stays in charge of all operational aspects of its F1 activity. Of course, representatives of Genii Capital were consulted, but it would be wrong to think of Renault as a two-headed structure that will have two decision-making hubs. This is one team with one structure.

Have you been given a timeframe to prove yourself?
EB : My employers never mentioned this, however I have set myself relatively high objectives. F1 is a dream for an engineer and I wouldn't want to let this opportunity pass me by. There is no pressure, only the motivation to do the job for which I have been appointed well.

Can you summarise your approach in three words?
EB : Humility, rigorous and openness. For me, the racing is the most important thing above all.

Is your age an advantage?
EB : I like to think so. The team wanted some fresh blood and to open a new chapter. F1 is made of cycles and the shape of tomorrow's sport is being defined now with a new generation beginning to fill the paddock little-by-little. Ferrari and McLaren have, among others, followed this evolution. And Christian Horner from Red Bull Racing is my age!

What are your objectives for 2010?
EB : It is still a little early to describe them precisely, but my mission is foremost to put the team back on track by concentrating on two main themes. One of my priorities will be to put in place an organisation that flows and is efficient in order for Enstone to work in harmony. Then, for the performance, we must put in place an improved feedback process. It won't happen in two months, we know that, but it will need to be progressive and solid. Today we have all the means to reach this objective. The budget is fixed, 60% of the wind tunnel has been upgraded and our high-tech CFD centre is now in full swing. So there's everything to play for.

As CEO of Gravity Sport Management, will the second driver be a Gravity driver?
EB: The second driver will have to be able to score points and challenge Robert Kubica. So in fact, it might be a Gravity driver or not, but I can guarantee that it will be even more difficult for a Gravity driver to be selected as they really will have to prove their worth to be chosen as Renault's second driver

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Robert Kubica begins his preparations for 2010 in Enstone!

Postby Ed » Tue Jan 19, 2010 1:08 am

Robert Kubica begins his preparations for 2010 in Enstone!

With winter testing fast approaching, Renault F1 Team driver, Robert Kubica, made a beeline for Enstone last week to begin his preparation for the 2010 season.

It may have been icy and snowy in the UK, but Robert arrived bright and early at the team's base in Enstone to try the cockpit of his new challenger for size.

Once Robert had made himself comfortable in a mock-up of the R30, he met up with Team Principal, Eric Boullier, for a progress report and to talk about his hopes for the year ahead. He then headed off to the wind tunnel to see the latest developments being put through their paces on the rolling road. Then Robert visited the composites lab to inspect some of the carbon fibre components that will soon be fitted to the first 2010 chassis.

It was also the chance for Robert to get to know his car crew a little better as he joined his engineers for lunch in the canteen. He'll be back at the factory at the end of the month to complete the seat fit, but before that he's keeping his driving skills sharp by competing in the Monte Carlo Rally in a Renault Clio R3.

Q&A with Robert Kubica

Robert, you visited Enstone last week. What were your first impressions?
I had been to the factory before when I tested for the team a few years ago, but it was great to return and see how much has changed. The site is bigger now and there are more facilities such as the CFD centre, which is very impressive and will play a big role in the development of our car this year. When you walk around the factory there is a great atmosphere and everybody seems motivated and up for the fight – just like me!

How did the seat fit go?
We've only done the first stage in a mock-up chassis as the first R30 isn't ready yet. So we checked the dimensions and took measurements to make sure I was comfortable in the car. There are some small changes to be made, but no major issues. Later this month I'll go back to Enstone to try out the proper chassis and to have my seat made so that we are ready for the first test in Valencia.

How is your relationship with the team developing?
So far things are going really well and the factory has given me a warm welcome. It's still very early days and I need to get to know everybody in the team, but at the moment things are going well. I already have a good relationship with my engineers and we talk on the phone every week as I want to know as much about the new car as possible. The only difficulty I have is being patient enough to wait for the first test as it has been a long winter out of the car. Valencia cannot come soon enough!

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Postby Ed » Mon Feb 01, 2010 9:10 am

The Renault F1 Team is delighted to announce that Vitaly Petrov will race for the team this season alongside Robert Kubica.
The 25-year-old will become the first Russian to compete in Formula One when he makes his Grand Prix debut in Bahrain in March. He joins the Renault F1 Team off the back of a successful GP2 career having finished as the Series runner-up last season.

Renault F1 Team Principal, Eric Boullier, said: “This is a very special day for Vitaly and we welcome him into the team. As a rookie, we recognise that Vitaly will have a lot to learn this season, but his performances in GP2 last year were outstanding and confirmed that he is ready to make the step up to Formula One. With Robert alongside him, Vitaly has the perfect role model to learn from and I’m confident he will deliver on the promise he has shown throughout his career.”

Vitaly Petrov added: “This is a great opportunity for me and I’m really looking forward to working with the team this season. I’ve always dreamed of racing in Formula One and so to make my debut with a top team like Renault is very exciting. The first race is just over a month away so I will make sure I spend as much time as possible with the team over the next few weeks so that I am fully prepared in time for Bahrain.”

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Postby Ed » Mon Feb 01, 2010 5:10 pm

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Renault F1 Team presents the R30 in Valencia

The Renault F1 Team took the covers off its 2010 challenger, the R30, today in front of assembled media at the Valencia circuit in Spain.

Renault F1 Team driver Robert Kubica was on hand to unveil the car and reveal the exciting new black and yellow livery – the iconic colours made famous by Renault in the 1980s. The team also presented Vitaly Petrov as Robert’s teammate for the 2010 season. The 25-year-old finished as runner-up in the GP2 Series last year and becomes the first Russian driver to race in Formula One.

After unveiling the R30, Team Principal, Eric Boullier, joined Robert and Vitaly for a photo call in front of the car, along with the team’s Third Driver, Ho-Pin Tung, and Reserve Driver, Jérôme d’Ambrosio. Czech driver Jan Charouz will also be a Reserve Driver for the team this year but was unable to attend the presentation.

With stable aero regulations the R30 is a mixture of evolution and revolution, and is much more svelte and attractive than its predecessor. In particular the rear of the car has been considerably reworked to allow the car to make the most of the ‘double-decker’ diffusers that were first seen last year. Changes have also been made to the architecture of the chassis to adapt to the refuelling ban, which has required the installation of a much larger fuel tank.

Speaking at the presentation, Eric Boullier praised the team’s efforts in delivering the new car in time for the first test: “We’ve been working flat-out during the winter to ensure that we begin the new season in the best shape possible. The R30 should be a competitive, strong and reliable car, and we’ve opted for an aggressive development strategy throughout the season. Now we’re here ready for the first test and we’re all excited to see if the car performs as we think it will.”

Both Robert and Vitaly were thrilled to see their new car and spoke of their hopes for the season ahead: “The team has been working on the new car for a long time and it’s clear that we are moving in the right direction,” said Robert. “Now we need to maximise the winter tests to keep up this momentum and continue improving the car. Our priority is to make the car easy to drive because the new rules favour cars that are not too sensitive – we need a car that behaves consistently in a wide range of conditions.”

Vitaly Petrov added: “The new car looks stunning and the colours remind everybody of Renault’s great history in the sport. I can’t wait to drive the car for the first time and start working with the team.”

The Renault F1 Team will remain in Valencia until Wednesday evening to complete the first pre-season test session.

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Postby Ed » Tue Feb 02, 2010 1:32 pm

Renault F1 Team starts its winter test programme

Having presented the R30 to the media yesterday, the Renault F1 Team kicked off its 2010 testing programme today in Valencia.
Robert Kubica was the man behind the wheel as the team’s 2010 challenger took to the circuit for the very first time shortly after 10:00am local time. The car was running with the distinctive black and yellow livery that was shown for the first time yesterday.

The team’s programme focussed on getting the car settled and getting Robert familiar with the new systems. This was also the team’s first opportunity to experience the narrower 2010-spec Bridgestone tyres. For the afternoon the team experimented with weight distribution.

Robert will remain in the car for a second day of running tomorrow. Vitaly Petrov will get his first laps in the car on Wednesday.

Robert Kubica: “My first day of testing the R30 went well. We had a lot of things to check on the car to make sure they were reliable and all that went smoothly with no big problems to report. Tomorrow we will start working on the balance and trying to understand the car a bit more. The narrower front tyres certainly had an impact on the car, but it’s difficult for me to judge as this is the first time I’ve driven the R30. Generally I think they will make the car understeer more in the quick corners.”

Alan Permane, Chief Race Engineer: “A fairly positive first day of running with the R30 with Robert in the car. We concentrated on putting mileage on the car and spent time getting Robert comfortable in the car. We also started learning about the behaviour of the R30 – what it likes, and how it responds to the narrower front Bridgestone tyres. Then we looked at the brake wear, which will be a key performance factor this year with the cars running heavy fuel at the start of the race. Overall it has been a productive day.”

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Postby Ed » Wed Feb 03, 2010 9:17 am

Renault F1 Team completes a second day of testing in Valencia

The Renault F1 Team remained in Valencia today for a second day of testing at the Spanish track. Weather conditions remained dry and sunny, allowing the team to complete another busy day working with the R30. Robert Kubica continued to add mileage to the car and clocked up a total of 119 laps by the end of the day. For tomorrow, Vitaly Petrov will take over the cockpit of the R30 for his first day of work with the team.

Robert Kubica: “After checking the systems on the car yesterday, we spent today trying to understand the car a bit more, especially to see how the balance reacted to some set-up changes. It’s quite different to what I have been used to, so it was important to get a good feel for how the car behaves. We did one very long run, which went pretty well, and there have been no problems, which is a good sign for our reliability.”

Alan Permane, Chief Race Engineer: “Another good day. We did a lot of laps: 119 in total, so we’re pleased with our reliability. The changes we made overnight have cured some of the understeer and Robert seems much happier and is feeling more comfortable with the car now. The track conditions were reasonably good and the Bridgestone tyres are particularly well suited to the circuit and are easy to test with.”

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Postby Ed » Thu Feb 04, 2010 3:25 pm

Renault F1 Team completes a final day of testing in Valencia

The Renault F1 Team completed its final day of testing in Valencia today as Vitaly Petrov made his debut for the team.
The 25-year-old Russian completed 75 laps as the team focussed on getting him acquainted with the car as he experienced F1 power for the first time. The day went smoothly and Vitaly successfully completed the technical programme to round off a productive week.

The team will remain in Spain and travel to Jerez next week to continue its winter testing programme.

Vitaly Petrov: “I really enjoyed my first day in the car and everything went well. The car is very impressive compared with a GP2 car and I enjoyed experiencing the power and braking performance. After about 30 laps I was starting to feel comfortable and understanding the limits of the car. It was also my first chance to work with my engineers and so far everything is going really well so I’m happy with the day.”

Alan Permane, Chief Race Engineer: “This was Vitaly’s first day in the R30 and we concentrated on getting him comfortable and familiar with the car. There’s a lot for him to get used to in terms of the brakes, power and the extra downforce, but he adapted well and did a good job. Overall our first week with the car has been successful and we’ve come away with a lot of valuable knowledge about the car. We’re now looking forward to building on this work in Jerez next week.”

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Postby Ed » Thu Feb 11, 2010 8:56 am

The Renault F1 Team completed the first of four days testing in Jerez today.
Circuit: Jerez de la Frontera

Length: 4.4 km
Driver Day 1: Vitaly Petrov
Chassis: R30 02
Total Laps: 27
Fastest Lap: 1:25.440

Summary of the day: A dry start to the day lasted for just over half an hour when heavy rain showers hit the circuit. The track remained damp throughout the day and Vitaly completed some wet weather running in the afternoon.

Vitaly Petrov: “The weather was really poor today with lots of rain so we did limited running. I usually enjoy driving in the wet but it was annoying to loose so my much track time to the weather. Hopefully we will have better conditions later in the week.”

Alan Permane, Chief Engineer: “The bad weather meant it was a frustrating day for us as we only managed to complete one dry run this morning on scrubbed tyres. We then spent some time doing systems checks in the garage and discovered a small problem with the brake system, which we managed to fix by the end of the day. Looking ahead to tomorrow, Robert [Kubica] will be in the car and fortunately the weather forecast looks a lot better.”

Jerez Test Schedule:
Thursday 11 February: Robert Kubica
Friday 12 February: TBC
Saturday 13 February: TBC

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Postby Ed » Fri Feb 12, 2010 9:59 am

The Renault F1 Team completed a productive second day of testing in Jerez.
Circuit: Jerez de la Frontera

Length: 4.4 km
Driver: Robert Kubica
Chassis: R30 02
Total Laps: 103

Fastest Lap: 1:22.003

Summary of the day: Dry conditions allowed the team to complete good mileage, making use of the dry tyres saved from yesterday. The technical programme was focussed on set-up work and continued assessment of the narrower front Bridgestone tyres.

Robert Kubica: “We started the day with a damp track so we had to wait for conditions to improve before we started our main programme. We made good progress with the workload and did some set-up evaluation and tried to understand how the changes influenced the balance and behaviour of the car. We saw some nice results and learnt some interesting things so overall it was a good day.”

Alan Permane, Chief Engineer: “Another very productive day as we completed over 100 laps and did a lot of set-up work with the car. We had made a lot of changes for Robert since the last test in Valencia and he’s now much more comfortable and happier in the car. We steadily improved the balance and grip throughout the day and hopefully we can continue with this tomorrow if the rain holds off.”

Jerez Test Schedule:
Friday 12 February: Vitaly Petrov
Saturday 13 February: Robert Kubica

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Postby Ed » Sat Feb 13, 2010 12:12 pm

The Renault F1 Team completed a third day of testing in Jerez.

Circuit: Jerez de la Frontera
Length: 4.4 km
Driver: Vitaly Petrov
Chassis: R3002
Total Laps: 68
Fastest Lap: 1:22.000

Summary of the day: A dry start lasted for just over an hour before the rain returned making for damp conditions for the rest of the day. The team adapted its programme and Vitaly completed 68 laps acclimatising to the R30 in the wet and completing some practice starts.

Vitaly Petrov: “In the morning we managed to do a bit of dry running and the car felt good and well balanced. Then, when the rain arrived, we did quite a lot of work as it was important for me to understand how the car behaves in the wet conditions and the characteristics of the wet and intermediate Bridgestone tyres. That went well and we also did a lot of practice starts as I learn the procedures and systems on the car.”

Alan Permane, Chief Engineer: “Another very wet day, but we managed to complete a couple of dry runs early this morning and Vitaly was pretty happy with the car. Then it started raining and remained wet for the rest of the day so we spent our time putting mileage on the engine and on some new parts. The wet conditions also gave Vitaly the chance to try both the wet and intermediate Bridgestone tyres and he seemed comfortable with both of them.”

Jerez Test Schedule:
Saturday 13 February: Robert Kubica

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Postby Ed » Sun Feb 14, 2010 12:09 pm

The Renault F1 Team completed a fourth and final day of testing in Jerez with Robert Kubica.
Circuit: Jerez de la Frontera

Length: 4.4 km

Driver: Robert Kubica

Chassis: R3002

Total Laps: 85

Fastest Lap: 1:20.358

Summary of the day: The first half of the day was damp, causing the team to complete limited running. Conditions improved in the afternoon allowing Robert to complete some long runs and set-up work.

Robert Kubica: “We were unlucky again with the weather this morning but it was dry in the afternoon and we managed to improve the car quite a bit. Each day of testing the car feels better and the progress we have made this week confirms that we are moving in the right direction.”

Alan Permane, Chief Engineer: “It was a slow start to the day as there was quite a bit of rain so we didn’t do too much running in the morning. We did a few runs on wet tyres to check the car out and then waited for the track to dry. As soon as the track was ready for slicks we went out and worked through a set-up programme and made really good progress. We’ve managed to improve the performance and the drivability, and Robert’s finished the day very happy with things. ”

Jerez Test Schedule 17-20 February:
Wednesday 17 February: Vitaly Petrov
Thursday 18 February: Vitaly Petrov
Friday 19 February: Robert Kubica
Saturday 20 February: Robert Kubica

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Postby Ed » Thu Feb 18, 2010 11:07 am

The Renault F1 Team returned to Jerez today to start its second week of testing at the Spanish circuit.
Circuit: Jerez de la Frontera

Length: 4.4 km

Driver: Vitaly Petrov

Chassis: R3002

Total Laps: 55 laps

Fastest Lap: 1:26.237

Summary of the day: A day of mixed weather in Jerez saw the circuit affected by several heavy rain showers during the day. At times the track dried out allowing the team to complete a mix of wet and dry running.

Vitaly Petrov: “Another wet day in Jerez. The track conditions were constantly changing from wet to dry, which made it difficult to learn very much. We have to hope that tomorrow is better so that we can get a lot of laps on the car.”

Alan Permane, Chief Engineer: “It was a very frustrating day, especially for Vitaly who has had very little dry running so far. The frequent showers meant that the track was wet for most of the day and we couldn’t achieve a great deal of constructive work”

Jerez Test Schedule 18-20 February:
Thursday 18 February: Vitaly Petrov
Friday 19 February: Robert Kubica
Saturday 20 February: Robert Kubica

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Postby Ed » Fri Feb 19, 2010 9:28 am

The Renault F1 Team completed its second day of work in Jerez this week with Vitaly Petrov in the R30.

Circuit: Jerez de la Frontera
Length: 4.4 km
Driver: Vitaly Petrov
Chassis: R3002
Total Laps: 56 laps
Fastest Lap: 1:27.828

Summary of the day: Another day of unsettled weather restricted the team’s technical programme. There were heavy rain showers in the morning and windy conditions with further showers in the afternoon.

Vitaly Petrov: “It was cold and wet once again today, but we still did some useful work in the wet conditions and practiced pit stops, which is good experience for me. I’m now hoping that the final test in Barcelona will give us better weather so I can do some dry running before we arrive in Bahrain.”

Alan Permane, Chief Engineer: “It was another frustrating day with the changeable weather, but we made the most of it to run both the wet and intermediate tyres. In the afternoon, when the track was damp, we chose to carry out some procedural work, including practice pit stops. Overall Vitaly was quite happy with the car and showed good pace today.”

Jerez Test Schedule 19-20 February:
Friday 19 February: Robert Kubica
Saturday 20 February: Robert Kubica

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Postby Ed » Sat Feb 20, 2010 6:56 pm

The Renault F1 Team completed its third day of work in Jerez this week with Robert Kubica in the R30.
Circuit: Jerez de la Frontera

Length: 4.4 km
Driver: Robert Kubica
Chassis: R3002
Total Laps: 100 laps
Fastest Lap: 1:21.916

Summary of the day: After the showers yesterday, bright and sunny conditions greeted the team this morning and the track remained dry throughout the day. Robert’s programme included set-up and procedural work.

Robert Kubica: “In the morning it was damp so we just did an installation lap to check everything was working and waited for the track to dry. The conditions were quite windy, which has a big influence on the car, but we were able to test quite a lot of things so I’m pretty pleased with the day.”

Alan Permane, Chief Engineer: “Finally the weather improved and we managed to complete a productive day of work. Early on the track was still damp, but it dried out quite quickly and we got some useful set-up work done with Robert, which has taken us in a good direction. We also spent some time doing procedural work, practice starts with a heavy car and pit stop pull-aways. Robert also ran a couple of different dry tyre compounds to compare them, which was useful.”

Jerez Test Schedule:
Saturday 20 February: Robert Kubica

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Postby Ed » Sun Feb 21, 2010 12:30 pm

The Renault F1 Team completed its final day of work in Jerez with Robert Kubica behind the wheel of the R30.
Circuit: Jerez de la Frontera

Length: 4.4 km
Driver: Robert Kubica
Chassis: R3002
Total Laps: 117 laps
Fastest Lap: 1:19.114

Summary of the day: Dry and sunny conditions allowed the team to make good progress with its technical programme. After evaluation of fuel loads in the morning, attention switched to long runs in the afternoon along with set-up work. Robert completed 117 laps and set the second quickest time of the day.

Robert Kubica: “It was a good day and we tried a lot of different things, which has given us lots of useful information. To begin with we did some evaluation with different fuel loads to check the balance of the car and then in the afternoon we did long runs with heavy fuel to simulate a race distance. We completed most of the programme and I was pretty happy with the car.”

Alan Permane, Chief Engineer: “Another solid day of work as we made the most of the good weather. We ran the car with varying fuel loads this morning to see how it reacted and we were pleased with the results. Then we attempted a race simulation and, although it was interrupted, we still managed to cover the required number of laps. Later in the afternoon we concentrated on some set-up work and found a good direction with the car.”

Barcelona Test Schedule:
Thursday 25 February: Vitaly Petrov
Friday 26 February: Vitaly Petrov
Saturday 27 February: Robert Kubica
Sunday 28 February: Robert Kubica


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