Renault has revealed it will assess its B-spec power unit in the fist two-day in-season test scheduled after next weekend’s Spanish Grand Prix.
The French manufacturer, which still has 24 engine development tokens in hand, looks to introduce the major upgrade for the Canadian Grand Prix in June, with customer team Red Bull hoping it can help it further close the gap to Mercedes and Ferrari at the front.
Renault will also unleash a flurry of evolutions as the European leg of the F1 season gets underway at Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya.
“For the race we have an updated rear wing as well as some updates for the front wing,” chassis technical director Nick Chester said. “For the test we have a full raft of things to try; new suspension, further aero updates over various areas of the car, some mods to cooling as well as evaluating the B-spec power unit, so we should have a full two days.”
After Kevin Magnussen scored breakthrough points last time out in Russia - Renault’s fist haul since it returned as a works outfit -, Cyril Abiteboul explains that next week’s race will signal the end of the initial phase since buying out Lotus last December.
“Getting points in Russia was a good fillip for the team after the tough race in China,” the managing director said. “We were reliable and competitive enough to out-race our closest competition and that took a lot of hard work. That said, we acknowledge it took a cocktail of circumstances and repeating the result in Spain would be tough.
“However, Barcelona is the start of our development program and we will see some new developments coming through in the race, with several others scheduled for the test afterwards.
“We look at this race as a marker in the sand: the exit point of our recovery from the takeover and the first race as ‘our’ team. It will start small, but I’m confident we will gain momentum as we go forward.”