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Renault F3 race debut put on hold by Signature

Renault's Formula 3 engine project is to miss the first few rounds of the Formula 3 European Championship.

The Signature team, which was planning a return to F3 this season after a two-year sabbatical, took the decision yesterday not to contest this weekend's opening round at Silverstone.

While the squad's two Dallara-Renaults are in the paddock, they will not race until further testing has been conducted.

Team boss Philippe Sinault told AUTOSPORT: "We have decided to stop the programme for the moment, because of the lack of potential regarding the engine.

"We started the programme very late [the first track test of the ORECA-built powerplant only came three weeks ago], and we want to compete at the right level - so we have a lot of work to do."

The team will instead begin a testing programme, although Sinault said he does not know with which driver.

When asked when the engine's race debut could be, he said: "It's too soon to say. First we have to analyse what has happened regarding the engine."

Formula Renault graduate Oscar Tunjo left the team just before the second official test, while the team's other driver Tatiana Calderon has been given permission to race for another squad.

Colombian Calderon is therefore competing at Silverstone with Jo Zeller Racing, which was initially planning to run Sandro Zeller, son of the team founder.

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