Last week’s Belgian Grand Prix provided Renault with their biggest single race score since their comeback to the sport.
Daniel Ricciardo’s P4 and Esteban Ocon’s P5 not only guaranteed 23 crucial championship points to the team, but also displayed a brilliant and encouraging pace for the races to come.
According to Ricciardo, the turning point in Renault’s performances came at the 70th Anniversary GP, when “something” clicked and helped to show the true potential of the car.
"There is definitely something we picked up from Silverstone - like a sweet spot," the Australian commented.
"I found it in terms of feeling in the car, <<right, this is where we need to run the car>>. And we played around a bit here as well this weekend with it.”
"And again there was one session, I think it was in FP2, where I was like, <> So there is something fundamental which I think we've got a good choke hold on."
At Spa Renault found a great balance on a low-downforce set-up, not only compared to the midfield, but also to the big names in front. Crucially, this week’s Italian GP will require the lowest wing angle of the entire season, and the French team is therefore probably hiding a cheeky smile beneath their face masks.
Up ahead on the calendar is Mugello, a track characterized by a fast sweeping layout, where rear-end stability will instead be key.
But Ricciardo is not worried: this so-called “sweet spot” may work on every kind of circuit, as he declared: "I think we can get it working on high downforce tracks: it's not typical to low downforce. We can run it on all levels, so I think it's just finding what works best with a high downforce”.
A lot of confidence for Daniel Ricciardo, who wants to end his relationship with Renault on a high, before switching to the rivals of McLaren: "It certainly brings the car alive. So yeah that's something which I'm pretty confident in, where the RS20 likes to be run.”
"And I'm not sure we had something like this last year. I'm not sure we had like a real discovery like this last year, so that's been encouraging."
He loves pizza, especially when we go to Monza! We had to ask @danielricciardo to preview the Italian GP, and we had to test his pizza-making skills. It's the content we (all) wanted. #RSspirit #ItalianGP— Renault F1 Team (@RenaultF1Team) September 1, 2020
Social distancing disclaimer: this was filmed in January! pic.twitter.com/7DLdkvHlWn