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Renault vow to address alternator issue - again

Renault and Red Bull Racing have vowed to do all they can to resolve the alternator problem that sidelined Sebastian Vettel for the second time in F1 2012.

Sebastian Vettel's second alternator-related retirement of the 2012 season will be addressed as a matter of urgency after derailing the German's championship challenge at the Italian Grand Prix.

While Vettel is not out of the title race, far from it, he dropped to fourth in the closely-matched pack chasing Fernando Alonso and sits 39 point adrift of the Ferrari driver with the seven 'flyaway' races remaining between now and mid-November. The German was also not in a position to threaten Alonso's podium finish at Monza, having been penalised for 'forcing' his rival off the road at the Curva Grande as the Spaniard attempted to recover from a qualifying disaster on Saturday. Alonso eventually finished third, behind Lewis Hamilton - who assumes Vettel's role as chief challenger to the Ferrari driver - and Sergio Perez.

Vettel was instructed, with some urgency, to park his RB8 on the run to the Rettifilio at the start of lap 47, having earlier been warned that the figures being sent back from the engine were far from favourable. The problem was later confirmed as alternator failure, which also appeared to be the cause of the German's late session exit in FP3 on Saturday morning and, having already cost him a likely win in Valencia, both RBR and Renault have vowed to try and address the issue before the season resumes in Singapore.

"It was a hugely disappointing race – our first non-scoring race since Korea 2010," team principal Christian Horner reflected, acknowledging Mark Webber's late DNF, "It was a repeat failure with the alternator on Sebastian's car and we need to look into it and work with Renault to ensure it doesn't happen again. It's already cost us a victory in Valencia and now a points finish again here in Monza. It's important we address it for the remaining seven races.”

Engine partner Renault had vowed to investigate the alternator problems that struck in the heat of Valencia, with Lotus' Romain Grosjean also being sidelined within laps of Vettel's exit, but insisted that the two retirements in that race appeared to have been caused by different things, with overheating blamed for the world champion missing out on what would have been his second win of the year.

“We changed the alternator on Sebastian's car [after FP3] but, unfortunately, we had the same failure in [the] race," Renault's Cyril Dumont confirmed, "We are still looking into why this happened, but we do know that, even though the alternator was being operated entirely within the prescribed range, the part itself overheated and shut off the power supply. We have to apologise to Red Bull Racing as, clearly, this has hurt us in the championship. We have no option but to sort it out and it will still be a priority before Singapore.”

Webber, meanwhile, did not report problems with his engine, but spun at Ascari late on and was forced to retire with a severe vibration that meant that he could not focus on the circuit. Even though he, like Vettel, was classified in the results, stopping before the chequered flag will allow RBR to make certain changes to his RB8 ahead of Singapore.

"For Mark, it was a tough race and, unfortunately, he just ran out of tyres near the end of the race and the resulting flat spots that came from the high-speed spin put an awful lot of vibration in the car," Horner confirmed, "Rather than risk a failure, we chose to retire the car."

Related Pictures

Click on relevant pic to enlarge
22.07.2012 - Redbull-Renault Engine
09.09.2012- Race, Felipe Massa (BRA) Scuderia Ferrari F2012 leads Sebastian Vettel (GER) Red Bull Racing RB8
09.09.2012- Race,  Sebastian Vettel (GER) Red Bull Racing RB8 retires from the race
09.09.2012- Race,  Sebastian Vettel (GER) Red Bull Racing RB8 retires from the race
23.03.2017 - detail Red Bull Racing RB13
23.03.2017 - detail Red Bull Racing RB13
23.03.2017 - Daniel Ricciardo (AUS) Red Bull Racing RB13
23.03.2017 - Cyril Abiteboul (FRA) Renault Sport F1 Managing Director and Alain Prost (FRA) Renault Sport F1 Team Special Advisor
23.03.2017 - Sebastian Vettel (GER) Scuderia Ferrari SF70H
23.03.2017 - Nico Hulkenberg (GER) Renault Sport F1 Team RS17 and Guenther Steiner (ITA) Haas F1 Team Prinicipal
23.03.2017 - Jolyon Palmer (GBR) Renault Sport F1 Team RS17
23.03.2017 - Cyril Abiteboul (FRA) Renault Sport F1 Managing Director
23.03.2017 - Nico Hulkenberg (GER) Renault Sport F1 Team RS17
23.03.2017 - detail Red Bull Racing RB13
23.03.2017 - Max Verstappen (NED) Red Bull Racing RB13 helmet
23.03.2017 - Max Verstappen (NED) Red Bull Racing RB13 helmet
23.03.2017 - Max Verstappen (NED) Red Bull Racing RB13 helmet
23.03.2017 - The helmet of Max Verstappen (NED) Red Bull Racing RB13

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September 10, 2012 9:33 AM

@bonecrasher Gimme a break. They push the boundaries of the regulations....so what. The regulations are so tight there's no room for innovation. McLarens third peddle, was that cheating or a bright idea, Renault's mass damper, F-Duct etc etc. Ferrari and Benneton have both hidden traction control in their ECU in the past as have others etc etc How about deliberately crashing your car to fix a race result...now THAT'S cheating.

George - Unregistered

September 10, 2012 9:49 AM

Red Bull are leading the constructors and both drivers have a good chance of winning the title unlike any other team. Doesnt sound like a struggling team to me.

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