Renault progress as expected – Ricciardo

Daniel Ricciardo says Renault made the expected step forwards with its power unit over the winter.

Red Bull and Renault’s relationship became strained in 2015 due to reliability and performance issues, leading Red Bull to re-badge the power units as Tag Heuer’s this year. Having been expecting to fight for the championship last season, Ricciardo has set more modest targets for the start of 2016 but is happy with the improvement shown from the power unit this year.

Asked if Renault’s progress is in line with expectations, Ricciardo replied: “I think for now it is.

“We got a little bit more out of it, and we were able to run a few more settings which will be representative to what we will have in Melbourne.

“We know the first few races not to expect too much, but then we should get some steps after that. For now we are on target. It does feel a bit better, but of course there is more to come, hopefully, once we get to Europe.”

And Ricciardo says he trusts Renault will deliver on planned upgrades as a result of the improvements made over the winter.

“We have more understanding, more experience and better execution. The whole team has given us a lot of confidence that we will find bigger steps with the power unit. They have told us to be conservative for the first few races and not expect too much until we get back to Barcelona and Monaco where we can get a big step to get closer to the front.

“Already we are on the right path and testing has been a lot better for us than it has been for the past two years and the first signs are good.”

Follow live coverage and timing from pre-season testing here

GALLERY: Pre-season testing

Keep up to date with all the F1 news via Facebook and Twitter