Renault sacrificed performance for greater Brazil reliability

Renault admitted that it forewent pure performance at the Brazilian Grand Prix in its quest for greater reliability, having taken the wrong approach at the previous event in Malaysia.

Despite Max Verstappen’s triumph, Renault suffered a difficult time at the Autódromo Hermanos Rodríguez, with its weekend hampered by a lack of reliability, as four of its six cars retired.

In Brazil, all bar Brendon Hartley reached the chequered flag, with high oil consumption deemed culpable for his retirement.

However, Red Bull was unable to challenge the Ferrari/Mercedes quartet, with Max Verstappen and Daniel Ricciardo fifth and sixth, while Renault pair Nico Hülkenberg and Carlos Sainz Jr. has a quiet run to 10th and 11th.

“Our focus was on reliability for this weekend and we saw three Renault-powered cars finish in the top ten and five cross the finish line,” said Renault Managing Director Cyril Abiteboul.

“This better reliability unfortunately came at the expense of performance, as were clearly running below our potential pace.”

Nico Hülkenberg added: “On the one side, it’s good to have finished the race, on the other side we did lack pace.

“I was pushing flat out, so it’s a shame we couldn’t do more.”

Hülkenberg’s point was his first since his sixth-place finish at the Belgian Grand Prix in August.