Sports | 08 July 2016

British Grand Prix

It is always special to travel to Silverstone for the British Grand Prix. Indeed, it was this legendary Northants circuit that staged the very first Formula 1 World Championship race back in 1950 and it carries particular significance for the Renault Sport Formula One Team.
by Caroline De Beaumont

For not only is the track less than an hour away from the squad’s Enstone base, but it was also at Silverstone that Renault revolutionised the F1 world by introducing turbocharging technology when it joined the grand prix grid in 1977!

Of course, you don’t need to be a history buff to appreciate this grand prix, which invariably generates a pulsating atmosphere.


 It’s one of the weekends I look forward to the most. There’s a great ambiance with all the fans who are always so enthusiastic for the race. You can sense that excitement when you drive in each morning. Unfortunately, there’s no Danish Grand Prix, so I consider this one to be almost a home race for me.

                                                      Kevin Magnussen, driver.



Beyond the unique feel of the event, Silverstone represents one of the greatest challenges of the season for drivers. The average speed over a lap exceeds 200kph and Copse Corner is one of the undisputed highlights of the year for competitors. Taken virtually flat-out, it leads into the ultra-fast sequence of Maggots, Becketts and Chapel which drivers approach at more than 300kph!


 These corners are just incredible!

                                                      Kevin Magnussen, driver.


Having a well-balanced car at your disposal is an absolute prerequisite at Silverstone, and this will form the principal focus for engineers over the weekend.


 We will be working towards having a nice stable car in the high-speed corners, while avoiding too much understeer – which can be tricky at Silverstone – and catering for some of the bumpier portions of the circuit.

                                 Nick Chester, Team’s Chassis Technical Director.


With such a long and fast lap, this track is also heavily engine-dependent. Fuel consumption is relatively high, but the MGU-H (exhaust gases) and MGU-K (braking) energy recovery systems will generate sufficient energy so that this factor does not unduly influence the drivers’ rhythm.

For Jolyon Palmer, quite clearly, competing on home turf is a very special occasion.


I had my first race at Silverstone when I was 15-years-old, so I know the place pretty well! I can’t wait to race in front of my home fans. The crowd is huge and so passionate even if you’re not British, but for a British driver it takes on an extra level.”

                                          Jolyon Palmer, driver.


The new organisation of the Renault Sport Formula One Team will be seen in public for the first time at this grand prix. Cyril Abiteboul will henceforth oversee operations within the Enstone factory, while Frédéric Vasseur moves into the position of Team Principal.

I will continue to attend all races, and I will have a greater role in the day-to-day management of activities at Viry-Châtillon to ensure that everything on that side of the equation is functioning as it should.”

                                     Frederic Vasseur, Team Principal.