The Renault Sport F1 Team had both Jolyon Palmer and Nico Hulkenberg in action driving the R.S17 on the fourth and final day of the opening winter Formula One test at the Barcelona Circuit Du Catalunya in Spain.
Palmer and Hulkenberg completed a total of 90 laps with Palmer setting the third fastest time of the day posting a 01:21.778s and speaking following the action he stated:
It was another good afternoon even if I didn’t get much of a chance to try the wet tyres. We’ve continued to improve the car and that’s exactly what you want to achieve from pre-season testing. I think we can be really happy with where we’ve got to at the end of this first test and we’re definitely looking positively to next week. The car is improving all the time in terms of feel and pace with more to come than has been seen on the timing monitors so far.
Hulkenberg set the ninth fastest time of the day with a 01:24.974s and speaking following the session, the German commented by saying:
We completed a reasonable amount of laps in the morning, however the track dried pretty quickly so it was difficult to come to too many conclusions about the wet and intermediate tyres. We got some initial impressions on how the car reacts and feels on these tyres so we do have a starting point. The R.S.17 feels good so far, but we still have room for improvement and that’s what next week is about. We have a good starting point and base so we just need to work forward with more track time.
The Enstone outfit had a number of interruptions on day 4 as they changed the Renault power unit as well as changing the rear wing of the R.S17. Speaking about the four days of testing, Renault Sport F1 Team Managing Director Cyril Abiteboul commented by saying:
We have learnt a lot over the course of this first test. It has been rewarding for the team to work with Nico for the first time in the car and both him and Jolyon have given us positive feedback regarding the R.S.17. Our teams back at Enstone and Viry-Châtillon have worked tremendously hard to produce the R.S.17 and we have seen the first glimpse of its potential this week. Our engineers have made strong progress over the past four days and we are confident that we will continue to do so over the course of the next test too.
Renault will be back in action at the Barcelona Circuit Du Catalunya for the final test ahead of the Australian Grand Prix next week with Nico Hulkenberg and Jolyon Palmer sharing the car on all four days.