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Renault in the technical dilemma: prefer 2019 development?

Renault in the technical dilemma
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N ico Hülkenberg is a real team player. The term of his three-year contract with Renault is currently just before half-time. His commitment to the works team is long-term. When he was asked that his bosses were discussing going full throttle with the development of the 2019 car earlier than originally planned, the Rhinelander did not hesitate for a second: “That would not be a problem for me. Even if that should reduce the chances a bit this season. ”

The reason for the early shift of resources from R.S. 18 to R.S. 19 lies in the rule change that was decided at short notice. A simpler front wing and a larger rear wing should make overtaking easier. The measures ensure fundamental changes in the aerodynamic concept of the entire car and require a correspondingly high level of development effort. With limited resources, there is a risk of a false start to the coming season if capacities are not made available in time.

When will the Renault RS18 be phased out?

Technical Director Bob Bell and his team voted against the rule changes for 2019.

'We are currently in the middle of discussions about when we should cut back on the development of this year's car,' said Technical Director Bob Bell. “But we haven't made a decision yet. We are in a close battle for the top spots in the midfield. At the moment we cannot afford to back off on development. But now we have to think again. ”

The factory in Enstone currently employs 650 people. The number should rise to 700 by the end of the season. For the rapid increase since taking over the old oneLotus racing teams had to keep reorganizing their structures. That didn't exactly have a positive effect on the pace of development. The people in charge at Renault would have liked to see a little more consistency in the regulations in order to slowly increase the efficiency of the factory.

However, the French factory team was overruled during the voting on the new rules. 'In my opinion, there has not been enough research to show that these changes will improve the overtaking problem at all,' criticized Bell. “I would have preferred to have seen it if we had waited. I would have preferred to put all the effort into the new cars for 2021. And not now hastily introduced something that has not been fully thought out. ”

Renault cannot sacrifice the 2018 season

The statement by FIA aerodynamicist Nikolas Tombazis, according to which the deficit of the midfield is should theoretically downsize to the extreme with the new cars, Bell didn't want to sign. “I'm not sure it will make things more balanced. The big teams with their possibilities still have an advantage. It is easier for them to decide when to switch from the old to the new car. ”

The Renault team bosses are not only in a dilemma because of the close battle in the midfield. In order to free up bigger budgets for attacking the top teams, Renault has to prove this year that they are making real progress on the track. That means: In addition to the top position in the midfield, a reduction in the gap to the top three should also be achieved at the end of the year. If you declare the R.S. 18 to be discontinued too early, you run the risk of missing the specified goals. And then the increase in funds could also be refused.


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