Renault Sport Formula One team fought a tough Gulf Air Bahrain Grand Prix with Kevin Magnussen finishing in eleventh place and Jolyon Palmer failing to make the start.
Kevin’s race began from the pit lane due to a penalty incurred during practice on Friday but he fought through the field to finish just shy of the points. Jolyon returned to the pits at the end of the formation lap due to suspected hydraulic issue with his car. Kevin started the race from the pitlane on new soft compound Pirellis, changing to a set of fresh super soft tyres on laps 12, 24 and 38. Jolyon started the formation lap in P19 on new super soft tyres.
Kevin Magnussen, #20, R.S.16-02: Started from the pit lane (qualified P19), finished: P11
“Starting from the pit lane meant that it was always going to be a strategic race but I still had some fun fights out on track and we extracted all we had in the car today. We were so close to scoring points; it’s frustrating to think what could have been had we not incurred a penalty. In any case, the team did a good job this weekend, we’re working very well altogether and the car’s performance was encouraging. There are signs of good things to come for the team, including fantastic support from Renault; we have reason to smile. As long as we work really hard now, we will reap the benefits later.”
Jolyon Palmer, #30, R.S.16-01: Started P19, finished: DNS
“Having got one Grand Prix under my belt, I was looking forward to racing today so I’m disappointed at not making it past the formation lap! I think we could have had a chance to move up the grid, especially after our strong performance in Melbourne. Everything was okay with the car until the last corner of the lap, but then I had to go straight into the pits. It looks like it was related to hydraulics and we’ll be looking into it with the team to understand what happened. These things can happen in racing, and I certainly want to move to the next race in China as quickly as possible.”
Fred Vasseur, Racing Director
“It was a challenging weekend for the team here in Bahrain and we were on the cusp of scoring our first point once more today! Kevin did a very good job to start from the pit lane and get to the chequered flag in eleventh. We were so close to scoring a point and it was teasing us right until the end of the race. On the other hand, it was a real shame for Jolyon; he had to come back to the pits at the end of the formation lap and could not take the start of the race. This was particularly frustrating and we’re investigating what went wrong.