Horner: These cars are so complicated that even small problems can cause big failures

10 February, 2014

Daniel Ricciardo's Red Bull RB10 breaks down at Jerez

Daniel Ricciardo’s Red Bull RB10 breaks down at Jerez

Red Bull are not in panic mode despite a woeful debut for the Adrian Newey designed RB10. The World Champions endured an appalling four days of testing at Jerez late last month.

Team Principal Christian Horner, who has led the team to four consecutive Formula 1 World titles, told Sky Sport, “There’s a few things we needed to tighten up on our side but nothing major and obviously Renault have some issues that they are tidying up as well. But these cars are so complicated that even small problems can cause big failures.”

It is no secret that the RB10 was afflicted by overheating, as the trademark Newey tight packaging could not cope with the temperatures generated by the all new V6 turbo power unite. This coupled to a serious flaw in the Renault engine has done little to inspire confidence ahead of their title defence.

Christian Horner keeps an eye on testng in Spain

Christian Horner keeps an eye on testng in Spain

Thus Newey made a hasty retreat from Jerez back to Milton Keynes where he and the team set to work on a heavily revised RB10 which will break cover in Bahrain.

Horner admitted, “Obviously there’s quite a bit to do but there’s still a fair bit of time before the first race. The Bahrain test next week is an important test and we are working very hard at both Renault and Milton Keynes.”

“We don’t want another test like Jerez but that’s what testing is for – you sort your problems out so as not to have them at the races,” explained the Red Bull team boss.

Meanwhile Renault engineers, have been clocking overtime in an effort to sort out the issues that marginalised their teams during the four day test in southern Spain.

Renault has explaining to do in Spain

Renault has explaining to do in Spain

Sources who had access to the Lotus ‘promotional event’ at Jerez last weekend, where the E22 ran for the first time, which Renault used to gauge the effects of tweaks to their troublesome Power Unit, claim that “there was very litle fast running of the E22″ during the two days where Pastor Maldonado and Romain Grsojean got their first taste of the new car on track.

Ominously, and prompting negative speculation, is the fact informtion emanating from Jerez has been scarce from both Lotus, Renault and the French manufacturer’s F1 engine partners (Red Bull, Toro Rosso and Caterham) who were invited as observers to the test.

When pressed for comment by GP247 regarding the two day ‘promotional event’ a Lotus spokesperson wrote: “You’re on the list when we issue any further info.”

Renault has not answered email requests for feedback or information from the event. (GP247)

Subbed by AJN.


  • McLarenfan

    I would take it that Renault have a few niggles nothing major just like their road cars.
    Question: It catches fire due to bad wiring of the mirrors.
    Renault; “that is nothing major”.
    Question: The turbo screws up and drains the oil from the engine writing the car off Renault: “that is nothing major”.
    Question: OK then the heater electrics set fire to the car!!!
    Renault: “It keeps you warm”. Good luck Red Bull!!!

  • KevinW

    One week of tough testing lessons does not a season make. The real proof will come when the season starts up. Renault will sort their issues out. The question is, would you rather have bad test days and solve problems now, or go into the season confident all is well, only to discover when driven in anger you have serious issues that take weeks to sort out as competitors race away. I’m guessing the internal reality check and re-assessment at Renault and Red Bull, based on the hard lessons learned in Jerez, will have them both solving problems that other teams don’t even know they have yet. It’s way too early to draw any conclusions of any sort.

  • ianchesterton

    More failures in testing/training = less failures on the track during races. Spot on comment.

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