Italian Grand Prix: Renault preview Monza

renault-logoRenault Sport F1 head of track operations, Remi Taffin, previews the Italian Grand Prix, Round 13 of the 2014 Formula 1 World Championship at Monza.

“After the challenges of Spa we go to Monza, another big ‘power track’. We go there in a more optimistic and confident frame of mind after taking the win in Belgium – a track where we were expected to be on the back foot. We recognize that it took a cocktail of circumstances to come through, but that should not take anything away from the fact we showed good pace and were there to take advantage of the situation.”

“We have a similar mindset for Monza. It’s undoubtedly the fastest track of the year, with four long periods of wide open throttle and over three quarters of the lap taken flat out. There are three periods where the Power Units will be at full throttle for roughly 13 secs each, plus the main straight where it is flat out for 17secs, longer than a drag strip.”

“This year speeds will be even higher and we expect to see them peaking at over 350kph, the highest speed of the year so far and at least 10kph more than 2013. For these reasons, the ICE will come under huge pressure here and it’s likely we’ll use fresh parts where we can, both for performance and reliability.”

“The other components of the PUs will be less solicited. The turbo, for instance, will have an easier time since it will not turn at such high speeds down the straights. With just a couple of corners the MGU-K will likewise be a touch underused : each braking event is just over two seconds so there’s not enough time or energy dispersed to totally recharge the battery.”

“Equally the drivers run the kerbs as much as possible to straight line them, so further losing potential energy harvesting opportunities. To compensate, the MGU-K will be recovering energy at partial throttle through overloading the ICE. The MGU-H will also feed the MGU-K down the straights.”

“All in all, we know it’s a tough prospect and we do go there as underdogs, but as Montreal and Spa both showed we can run with the baton when it’s passed to us. It’s just what we need to do in Monza as well – concentrate on the job in hand and be ready if or when something happens, starting from the green light.”