Formula 1

Renault considered missing Jerez test

World champion Vettel completed just 11 laps in two days at Jerez (©GettyImages)
World champion Vettel completed just 11 laps in two days at Jerez (©GettyImages).

As their customer teams got off to a difficult start in pre-season testing, one veteran journalist revealed Renault considered missing the Jerez test altogether.

"The (Renault) cars sound like rattling lawn mowers," said F1 correspondent Roger Benoit, in Blick newspaper. "Renault was even thinking about not coming here."

Indeed the start to 2014 has been pretty close to a disaster for their most important customer, Red Bull.

The Austrian team and their world champion driver Sebastian Vettel completed just 11 laps over the first two days and as a write this, the team have yet to run in the opening two hours of Thursday.

"Obviously we do (have a problem)," Renault's Remi Taffin told reporters at Jerez on Wednesday.

While Red Bull's Helmut Marko exclaimed: "Annoying!" while speaking to Bild newspaper.

"The problem is in the communication between the two KERS systems," he explained. "So, like in a computer if the hardware and software are not working with each other."

After completing a handful of laps on Tuesday, Renault's newest customer, Toro Rosso, failed to run at all on day two in Spain, while the third team running the French marque's engines Caterham, are also having issues.

"We've got the parts, we have the people, we have the means to solve the problem," Taffin insisted. "We are confident that tomorrow (Thursday) morning at 9am, our customers will take to the track.

"This is high technology, which is why we have to be cautious. But I am happy with the solution we have found," he added.

Meanwhile Red Bull's team boss is playing down the issue.

"Our expectations coming into this test are purely system checks -- the proper testing will be in Bahrain,” Christian Horner told F1's official website.

The 40-year-old denied there were calls for an additional day to be added on to this week's test at Jerez though there is some talk Renault may ask for a delay to the homologation deadline for the new power units set by the FIA.

"We will be relying extremely heavily on our engine partner," Horner admitted.

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Formula 1

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