Renault has been flying its flag in the rarefied atmosphere of the world of Formula One racing since 1977. This is the pinnacle for performance cars, the highest class of competition for open-wheel racing cars.
It looks exciting, and it is, but in the specialised world of Formula One, there is as much grit as glamour, and as much dogged devotion to detail as there is inspirational design and innovation. To start with the glamour, let’s introduce Renault’s drivers.
Renault’s Formula One drivers: life at the cutting edge
Jolyon Palmer is the first British driver to be crowned GP2 Series Champion since Lewis Hamilton in 2006 and is into his second year on the grid with the Renault Sport Formula One Team. Teammate Nico Hülkenberg has also won the GP2 series, plus winning titles in Formula BMW and A1GP. He also took pole position at Brazil in his first season, and won Le Mans with a former team on his first outing in the 24-hour race in 2015. This talented twosome and the incredible cars they drive represent the tip of the iceberg of the team effort that goes into Renault’s Formula One logistics partnership.
Renault’s logistics partnership: the teams behind the scenes
The organisation and logistics involved in getting the 80 or so people and 40 tonnes of equipment needed to put cars and drivers on the racetrack is massive. It involves transporting heavy items of equipment by shipping container, followed by flights for personnel and smaller equipment, for the events outside Europe. In Europe, fleets of Renault vans are loaded with the essential goods, double and triple checked, and driven to the venue. The later transport is left, the more innovations can be included in the line-up, so it’s always a last-minute operation. The logistics are the responsibility of Geoff Simmonds, Race Team Co-Ordinator. Geoff is based in Enstone in Oxfordshire where two factories look after the chassis but the team’s activities also cover the French base in Viry-Châtillon near Paris, where the engines are built. For the seven European F1 events, meticulously checked and loaded Renault vans set out to arrive in time for the thrills of the racetrack.
More partnership benefits: Renault ‘Formula Edition’ LCVs
Another fruitful partnership between Renault Pro+ and the Renault Sport Formula One Team has emerged in the shape of Renault Formula Edition LCVs. These are specially adapted to the needs of Formula 1 and will be present trackside. The range covers Renault Kangoo, Trafic and Master vans, with their distinctive character proclaimed by black grilles and bumpers, satin-black Renault logos and black alloy wheels. These limited-edition vehicles also feature the Renault Formula One race colour yellow-gold trim on grille, doors, fog lights and wheels.
Where you can catch the Renault Sport Formula One team
European Formula One events coming up over 2017 include:
- Belgian Grand Prix Stavelot, 27 August
- Italian Grand Prix Monza, 3 September