Renault will try to improve R.S.17’s handling in Baku

Renault will try to improve R.S.17’s handling in Baku

Renault, Jolyon Palmer

Renault Technical Director Nick Chester is keen to build on the positivity of the team’s recent points finish in Montréal as the R.S.17 upgrade packages continue to move the team further forward.

What do we know about Baku?

It was a pretty tricky place last year on the circuit’s Formula 1 debut. It has a bit of a Monaco styled section but with some long straights down the back. It is a bit bumpy and a very difficult place for both set-up and driving. We will need good braking stability as it is hard braking with hard and tight corner entries. It has a tricky mix and we probably need three different cars; one for each section!

Nick Chester, Jolyon PalmerDoes the R.S.17 have any new upgrades?

We have got a few updates, including bodywork. We have some things to try on the suspension to improve the handling and also an update to the cooling system to improve the performance a little bit. What we learned from Canada will be useful for Baku especially in terms of hard-braking.

Is there much happening behind the scenes?

We already have a few designers working on the 2018 car. We are still working hard to develop the 2017 car and we have a few things still planned. As we start developing the 2018 model in the tunnel, we might try and bring some items forward to this year’s car. As you go through the season, you gradually have fewer designers on it as some of the attention switches to next season. We are also working hard behind the scenes to improve our capabilities at Enstone with upgrade programs in various departments.

The new Operations Room is hitting full swing, how is it functioning?

The Operations Room has been really useful since it went live in Spain. It has helped a lot to understand car performance and set-up after practice sessions. Monaco was a good example of that after our problematic Thursday. We made a big improvement courtesy of the room where we held meetings and managed to make some changes, find the problems and we subsequently found some improvement.