The European leg of the 2015 FIA Formula One World Championship got underway this weekend with the Spanish Grand Prix at the Circuit de Catalunya. The fifth round of the series saw the four Renault-powered Infiniti Red Bull Racing and Scuderia Toro Rosso cars take the finish, with three in the points. Infiniti Red Bull Racing’s Daniel Ricciardo crossed the line in seventh, with Daniil Kvyat tenth. Carlos Sainz was ninth for sister team Scuderia Toro Rosso and Max Verstappen just shy of the points in 11th.*
* Pending Stewards’ decisions
Key race points:
Daniel Ricciardo made two stops in the race to finish three places up on his qualifying position. The Australian raced with the Toro Rosso and Lotus cars for much of the race. Daniil Kvyat lost positions at the start and got stuck in traffic, but recovered into the top ten to claim one point.
Home hero Carlos Sainz qualified in fifth position, the highest grid slot of his F1 career so far. The Spaniard finished in ninth on track after overtaking Daniil Kvyat on the final lap of the race. Team-mate Max Verstappen likewise enjoyed a strong qualifying, starting sixth on the grid, but just missed out on race day points with 11th position.
Rémi Taffin, Director of Operations:
This weekend we achieved our minimum aim of finishing the Grand Prix with all four cars. We were less conservative in qualifying and showed that the potential is still there, but we took a safe approach in the race. We now need to maintain this platform and build on it for the next races. In parallel we are aware we need to raise our game in performance but we need to do this without taking any risks with the reliability.
Cyril Abiteboul, Managing Director:
Everyone at Viry has worked hard to recover from the disappointment of the first four races. We needed to eliminate the issues we saw and get reliability under control before we could introduce any new specification parts. We had to limit mileage in some cases until we had all the necessary information, which is never ideal, but sometimes you have to take a short term hit for long term gain. All four cars crossed the line so we are more or less back on an level footing with reliability, and can now look to bring a bit more performance for the next races.