Kobayashi: Renault currently behind F1 rivals Mercedes and Ferrari

Renault is not currently in a position to compete with rival engine manufacturers Mercedes and Ferrari, according to Caterham driver Kamui Kobayashi

Kobayashi: Renault currently behind F1 rivals Mercedes and Ferrari

The Japanese driver completed 66 laps in Bahrain today and was the fastest of the four Renault-powered drivers.

But with the French marque's battle to get its 1.6-litre turbocharged V6 engine package working effectively, he admits the team is unable to make serious progress with improving its car.

Bahrain test day two report

This means that Caterham has focused on working with its engine supplier to troubleshoot its ongoing difficulties.

"This is what we have in our hand right now so we have to help them to be able to fight with the other engine manufacturers," said Kobayashi when asked by AUTOSPORT about the engine situation.

"At the moment, we are definitely too weak pace-wise, so we give the maximum chance to them [to work] and thereafter we have to work on our car.

"So we are waiting for the engine system.

"During testing, we meet some other cars and clearly we can see the Mercedes cars are much quicker in the straights, 20-30km/h more and it would mean different braking points, everything, if we had proper power.

"We will see what we can do in a short time. At the moment, we are definitely quite late."

Kobayashi, who also suffered problems with the telemetry system of the Caterham this morning, is finding the power delivery out of slower corners to be a problem.

He is hopeful that this can be improved in the final six days of pre-season testing as currently improvements have been stymied by hitting problems.

But with Renault confident it is making progress, it is hoped that more meaningful work with the car, particularly getting on top of the rear braking-by-wire system, can be achieved tomorrow.

"We had many problems on the engine side," he said.

"This is what we are basically waiting for because we have too aggressive power delivery, which is very difficult to handle under acceleration out of the corner.

"So at the moment, slow corners are very difficult because we don't know how much grip we can get."

shares
comments
Bahrain F1 test: Red Bull not catching up yet - Sebastian Vettel
Previous article

Bahrain F1 test: Red Bull not catching up yet - Sebastian Vettel

Next article

Formula 1's near-misses

Formula 1's near-misses
Load comments
The “glorified taxi” driver central to F1’s continued safety push Plus

The “glorified taxi” driver central to F1’s continued safety push

As the driver of Formula 1’s medical car, Alan van der Merwe’s job is to wait – and hope his skills aren’t needed. JAMES NEWBOLD hears from F1’s lesser-known stalwarts

Formula 1
Jan 15, 2022
When BMW added F1 'rocket fuel' to ignite Brabham's 1983 title push Plus

When BMW added F1 'rocket fuel' to ignite Brabham's 1983 title push

There was an ace up the sleeve during the 1983 F1 title-winning season of Nelson Piquet and Brabham. It made a frontrunning car invincible for the last three races to see off Renault's Alain Prost and secure the combination's second world title in three years

Formula 1
Jan 13, 2022
How “abysmal” reliability blunted Brabham’s first winner Plus

How “abysmal” reliability blunted Brabham’s first winner

Brabham’s first world championship race-winning car was held back by unreliable Climax engines – or so its creators believed, as STUART CODLING explains

Formula 1
Jan 10, 2022
The steps Norris took to reach a new level in F1 2021 Plus

The steps Norris took to reach a new level in F1 2021

Lando Norris came of age as a grand prix driver in 2021. McLaren’s young ace is no longer an apprentice or a quietly capable number two – he’s proved himself a potential winner in the top flight and, as STUART CODLING finds out, he’s ready to stake his claim to greatness…

Formula 1
Jan 9, 2022
The original F1 maestro who set the bar for Schumacher and Hamilton Plus

The original F1 maestro who set the bar for Schumacher and Hamilton

Juan Manuel Fangio, peerless on track and charming off it, established the gold standard of grand prix greatness. NIGEL ROEBUCK recalls a remarkable champion

Formula 1
Jan 8, 2022
How Russell sees his place in the Mercedes-Hamilton F1 superteam Plus

How Russell sees his place in the Mercedes-Hamilton F1 superteam

George Russell joining Lewis Hamilton at Mercedes this year gives it arguably the best line-up in Formula 1 – if it can avoid too many fireworks. After serving his apprenticeship at Williams, Russell is the man that Mercedes team believes can lead it in the post-Hamilton era, but how will he fare against the seven-time champion? Autosport heard from the man himself

Formula 1
Jan 6, 2022
How F1 pulled off its second pandemic season and its 2022 implications Plus

How F1 pulled off its second pandemic season and its 2022 implications

OPINION: The Formula 1 season just gone was the second to be completed under the dreaded shadow of the COVID-19 pandemic, but in many ways it was much more ‘normal’ than 2020. Here’s the story of how the championship’s various organisers delivered a second challenging campaign, which offers a glimpse at what may be different next time around

Formula 1
Jan 5, 2022
The adapt or die mentality that will shape F1's future Plus

The adapt or die mentality that will shape F1's future

As attitudes towards the motor car and what powers it change, Formula 1 must adapt its offering. MARK GALLAGHER ponders the end of fossil fuels

Formula 1
Jan 3, 2022