Daniel Ricciardo believes Renault’s RS20 is an improvement on last season, but needs more “grip” and “downforce”.
Ricciardo put Renault’s 2020 challenger through its paces on the final day of pre-season testing, using the softest C5 tyres to set the third-fastest time.
While he didn’t want to get too carried away, he did say the RS20 was an improvement last year’s efforts, but in comparison to the top teams Renault were still missing some grip and downforce.
As quoted by Crash.net, he said: “I think we have improved the overall balance of our car, and I feel the rear now is better.
“We were able to get out of the corner a bit harder, so they have been improvements. So far the reliability and stuff is strong. That is something that Renault was really pushing for this year, and so far so good.
“Weaknesses of the car – watching the lap of [Valtteri] Bottas last week, and in general comparing to the Mercedes for example, they have a lot of rear grip with the front as well.
“With the front it seems like they can really carry a lot of speed through the corner and really be quite aggressive on entries. And the rear is planted but the front also has good bite. So we need more grip and more downforce.”
While Renault have worked hard over the winter to cure their weaknesses, Ricciardo believes the Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya where pre-season testing was held isn’t the best indicator of where they stand.
“The individuals on the car build this year have done some things to address it,” he said.
“Without going into details there is more suspension travel and stuff like that to help on some bumpier parts of the circuits.
“This track [Barcelona] you don’t really get an indication because it is very smooth and the curbs are flat, so you have to go to Melbourne and something bumpy and harsh to find out if it is better.”