Renault seeks urgent solution after second F1 radiator failure

The Renault Formula 1 team is seeking an urgent solution to a radiator issue after the Enstone outfit was hit by two identical failures in successive races

Renault seeks urgent solution after second F1 radiator failure

Last week Daniel Ricciardo was forced to retire from the Austrian Grand Prix after a weld failure led to a leak and triggered overheating. After the race the remaining examples were returned to the UK factory, X-rayed and checked over, and then sent back to the Red Bull Ring.

However in Sunday's Styrian Grand Prix Esteban Ocon had an identical failure and was called into the pits to retire after 25 laps, costing the team valuable points for a second time.

The problem for Renault is that the schedule of back-to-back races does not give the team enough time to source replacements, so it has to work with what it has.

"It's extremely, extremely frustrating and extremely disappointing," Renault executive director Marcin Budkowski told Autosport.

"It's a part that we get from a supplier. To get into detail, it's a weld on the radiator. We've inspected all the welds, we haven't found any issue. And we had the same exact problem.

"And we used the same radiators in Barcelona pre-season testing, and we had no issues whatsoever. So whether it's the kind of thermal duty cycle of the circuit, whether it's the famous kerbs of Spielberg, there's something we didn't understand, or we didn't manage to spot.

"So we're going to take stronger containment measures for the next race, but we're extremely disappointed that that we had the same problem twice and we lost two point-scoring opportunities with each driver.

"So we are going to look at it very, very hard again, so all the radiators are on the way again, back to Enstone to be checked."

Budkowski confirmed that the same batch would have to be modified for Hungary.

"We can't do new ones, so we're going to have to do what we call containment on the existing ones. We're going to have to add some material and try to reinforce the weld and try to make it less prone to breaking or to leaking.

"So it's not going to be pretty, but hopefully it will be good enough for one race, and we will look at something more robust and in the future."

The positive for Renault is that Ocon and Ricciardo have both managed a race distance and scored points, having earned an eighth place apiece from the opening two races.

"I didn't have any cooling issues or warnings today," Ricciado said after the Styrian GP. "So it seems like it's the reverse of last week, Esteban had no issues, I did. And today he had the issues, and I didn't, so I didn't have to take care of anything on cooling today. So mine was fine.

"But it seems like a very similar issue that he's had today. So that's, that's obviously something that needs further investigation."

"I'm obviously disappointed for sure with what happened," Ocon added. "We were running on a good position, we were having a great opportunity. I think the strategy was also quite nice. So it's a shame.

"Unfortunately, it's motorsport. We suspected it was a cooling issue. So we retired to save the engine, in case that was that the thing."

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