When Red Bull’s Daniel Ricciardo was looking for that little extra push over the cliff as most blokes are playing at 10, he couldn’t turn his up to 11. That’s because Renault gave him an engine that only goes to 7.
Renault Sport F1 had asked the FIA to allow for 11 token spends on a new power unit upgrade and many of thought that they entered the Brazilian Grand Prix with an upgraded power unit sporting 11 robust tokens of genius engineering capital but that isn’t the case as AUTOSPORT found out.
It seems that while Daniel Ricciardo suffered a 10-place grid penalty for the change in engines to the new upgraded lump, he was not very complimentary of its performance as compared to the old power unit. There is, perhaps, a reason for that as Renault only spent seven (7) tokens and not the 11 many were assuming had been spent.
The ever resourceful Lawrence Barretto at AUTOSPORT ferreted it out and determined that the seven tokens were used on the internal combustion engine (ICE) and the remaining four are focused on the turbo but due to parts availability and an incompatibility with the exhaust, they couldn’t release these for Brazil.
As the article rightly points out, the tough decision is that Renault would like to run the new parts in Abu Dhabi but it would require Red Bull to take yet another grid penalty and the jury is out on that decision at this point.
If Red Bull are truly going to try and run a white label version of the Renault or a re-badged version called Infinti, then they may elect to take the penalty to get some track time on the new power unit upgrade so they have a better idea of what they will be dealing with in 2016.
It still hasn’t been revealed what the team will do in 2016 but an article by Mr. Sylt at the Telegraph did have one key phrase that I thought could be at least some insight to what the team are thinking with regards to the 2016 season when team boss Christian Horner said:
“ultimate parent undertaking, Red Bull GmbH, confirmed to the directors that it has no plans or intentions that would materially affect the ordinary operations of the company within the next 12 months”
While these are date-stamped financial statements, they do at least lend credence to the fact that Red Bull have every intention of continuing into the 2016 season and while we may all know that, it is important that the financial statements reflect a commitment from the executive board.
It’s also an interesting article to see how much the team spend in trying to recover lost ground and one would assume that if they are going ahead with a Renault Sport F1 white label engine for 2016, they would like to see all of the latest components in play in Abu Dhabi to get a measure of what they will be dealing with. On the other hand, testing will shake that out as well.