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Reliability 'top priority' for Renault in 2013

With four teams currently relying on Renault F1 engines, the company's head of track operations Rémi Taffin is a very busy man on pit lane on GP weekends.
As head of track operations for engine supplier Renault F1, Rémi Taffin has a lot on his mind and even more calls on his time as the teams prepare for the 2013 season.

Renault supplies engines to four of the 11 teams on the F1 starting grid, including world champions Red Bull as well as Lotus, Williams and Caterham. That's a lot of plates to keep spinning, but Taffin is just fine with the pressure that this brings to the manufacturer.

"We want every team we supply to be a potential race-winning team," he insisted this week.

When it comes to delivering actual race wins, the Red Bull team is currently head and shoulders above the others. "We share the same fighting spirit," said Taffin, when asked to explain what it was that made this particular partnership quite so stunningly successful. "We like them to push us and we are always proud to answer quickly and efficiently to their requests.

"It is even more rewarding when we are able to propose new solutions to make the car faster," he added.

But not even Red Bull has enjoyed total success in the past 12 months, with a new alternator system from Renault seemingly proving to be a particular Achilles heel in last year's championship run. "Unfortunately, one area we could do better in is reliability," Taffin agreed. "We have looked long and hard at every single part and every single procedure to seek the last percentile from each.

"We need to secure our reliability to get back to a normal situation and then we will be able to push the limits again," he continued. "Purely technically, we have worked solidly through the winter to sign off different fixes for our main 2012 reliability issues."

Renault's longest relationship in the paddock has been with Lotus, and so Taffin was pleased to see them finally back on top with Kimi Raikkonen's win in the 2012 Abu Dhabi Grand Prix in November.

"Rather than returning to winning ways, I think it is normal to see Lotus winning and we will keep on supporting them in the same way," said Taffin. "In fact we didn't change our working pattern after Renault left the team to [new owners] Genii. Obviously we still have a very close relationship with the Enstone-based team and we always welcome their new ideas and help them as much as we can."

Renault's relationship with Caterham goes back two full seasons now, and Taffin is hopeful that it will soon bear some real fruit in terms of championship points in 2013.

"We work very efficiently with Caterham and it is difficult to see a big difference with the bigger teams, operationally speaking," he said. "Obviously the cars fielded by teams are always different but we trust Caterham to score their first points this year.

Related Pictures

Click on relevant pic to enlarge
22.07.2012 - Redbull-Renault Engine
Kimi Raikkonen, Lotus Renault F1 Team engine cover - Lotus F1 Team E20 Launch
25.11.2012- Race, Bernie Ecclestone (GBR), President and CEO of Formula One Management  and Carlos Ghosn (BRA), President Renault
15.10.2011- Engine of Lotus Renault GP, R31
15.10.2011- Engine of Lotus Renault GP, R31
23.03.2017 - Steering wheel  Williams F1 Team FW38
23.03.2017 - detail Williams F1 Team FW38
23.03.2017 - detail Williams F1 Team FW38
23.03.2017 - detail Williams F1 Team FW38
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 - 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 Williams F1 Team FW38

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Matt - Unregistered

February 27, 2013 8:20 PM

No problems with the engines but fix the F:ing Kers alredy... How many Kers failures did Kimi and Webber had last season, I cant even count that high. If I remember right Ferrari had 0 Kers failures and Mercedes was pretty close to that...

Nanbawan - Unregistered

February 28, 2013 2:31 AM

I guess the English speaking press likes to highlight Renault's slight reliability issues as compared to their huge success in past years and last season in particular... I suppose it's about the one few trains that are late...

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