Renault: Work on 2016 concepts yields 'good results'

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Renault Sport F1 director of operations Remi Taffin says that the French engine manufacturer has been working on “concepts for next year” and monitored “good results”.

After four consecutive world titles with Red Bull, Renault has been struggling to extend its dominance into the latest era of hybrid power units.

A tough start to their 2015 campaign has further strained the relations between the two partners and led Viry to explore fresh options, which include returning as a works team - most likely via a Lotus buyout - or pulling the plug on its F1 programme.

Taffin now reveals that Renault, which is yet to spend any of its allocated 12 engine development tokens, has used the traditional summer break to prepare 2016.

“We’ve been extremely busy in the four weeks since the Hungarian Grand Prix,” he said. “In contrast to the teams, who had to shut their factories, we’ve been operating throughout the summer break to continue our development programme.

“The dynos have run as usual and we’ve conducted some notable performance work for the rest of the season and also concepts for next year. The results are good.”

Renault’s recovery over the first half of the current season culminated in a double podium finish for Red Bull’s Daniil Kvyat and Daniel Ricciardo at Budapest last month.

Although Taffin is aware of the tougher challenges presented by this weekend’s Belgian Grand Prix in terms of engine demands, this does not prevent Renault from harbouring high ambitions in the Ardennes.

“In parallel we have been preparing for Spa, which presents the hardest test of the year for the power units. The wide-open throttle time is as high as Monza, but it’s the corners, changes of altitude and length that increase the difficulty.

“We are realistic about the challenge facing us and the strength of the opposition at this point in time. The double podium in Hungary – and our win last year in Spa – show anything is possible so we go there in this frame of mind: concentrate on our job, do the best we can and take advantage of the circumstances as they come about.”

Renault's engine deal with supplied teams Red Bull and Toro Rosso runs until the end of the 2016 season.

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