Normal Friday for Renault despite small issues in the morning

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F1 Grand Prix, GP Spain, Circuit de Catalunyaes

After a busy couple of weeks to get back from China and to prepare for the Spanish Grand Prix, the European leg of the F1 season finally kicked-off at the Circuit de Catalunya this afternoon. The Renault F1 Team had some small issues on the car in the morning, but overall it was a usual Friday for the outfit.

Robert Kubica, R30-03
Free Practice 1: P7, 1:22.202, 22 laps
Free Practice 2: P6, 1:21.202, 36 laps

"We had a couple of small issues on the car this morning, so we weren’t able to collect much data. That meant we ran much more during the afternoon in order to evaluate the tyres and also try some set-up changes. At the moment, the balance is still a bit towards oversteer, so we will do some work overnight and try to improve things in the morning. But we have to see how the track evolves, too. Overall, from the times, it looked like a pretty normal Friday."

Vitaly Petrov, R30-02
Free Practice 1: P9, 1:22.397, 23 laps
Free Practice 2: P16, 1:22.435, 35 laps

"It was a normal day of practice for me and we worked through our usual programme of tyre evaluation and set-up work. In the afternoon, the weather changed and it was very windy, which had a big impact on the balance of the car and made it difficult to evaluate the set-up changes. I also suffered with quite a bit of oversteer in the second session. So there are still some things we need to work on tomorrow morning during the final practice session when I will concentrate on getting ready for qualifying."

Technical Debrief with Alan Permane, Chief Race Engineer:

Track conditions and evolution: "The track is used quite regularly so it was in a reasonable condition for the start of the session, although, like any track, it evolved during the day and picked up grip. In the afternoon, the wind picked up and there was a strong headwind on the main straight, which made it more difficult to assess things."

Position compared with other teams: "It’s difficult to make a judgement until we’ve been over all the data, and, of course, we don’t know the fuel loads the other teams are running. My feeling is that we should be in our normal position so I don’t think the order of the teams has changed significantly."

Tyre performance: "We’ve done short and long runs on both the prime (hard) and option (soft) tyres, and these are two tyres we are starting to know quite well because we have used them at the previous three races. The track is tough on tyres, especially the front left, but we still need to look over the wear figures to see how we’re doing."

General car balance: "Robert complained of a bit of oversteer in the afternoon, which is unusual for the R30 because the car balance generally tends more towards understeer. A few changes have helped that, but we still have some more work to do tomorrow. For Vitaly, he struggled for grip today, especially on the option tyre, so there will be more work to do overnight to try and get him back to his normal position."