Renault says engine deadline no worry

Renault insists Friday's Formula 1 engine homologation deadline poses no major worry, even though it has not yet fully solved all the problems with its new power unit.
While the French manufacturer is still working on efforts to cure the issues that have blighted its pre-season testing, it must submit its final V6 turbo engine designs to the FIA within the next 24 hours. But although that means engine designs are theoretically frozen, a clause in the regulations that allows changes to be made for "reliability, safety or cost saving reasons" means the situation is not too much of a concern.
Remi Taffin, Renault's head of trackside operations (LEFT), said: "I think as we have gone through the last six or seven years, when you go in to a season with a new engine, you know through the season you will have a few reliability issues that you will sort with the normal rules -- fair and equitable rules.
"If you look at the past six years, I think we finished with a V8 that had 95 percent parts changed from the beginning [of the rules cycle]. It will be the same story for us.
"We will be applying for our Melbourne spec tomorrow, and we will be delivering all the specs and all the documents that we need to. Obviously, if we have a few more issues to sort out we will do the same process as before."
Renault still needs to make big steps forward with its engine if it is to help its customer teams fight near the front at the Australian Grand Prix. Although the opening day of the final Bahrain test delivered more frustrations for its teams, Taffin reckons that progress had been made since last week.
"I think we made quite a step because we saw today we could run to a reasonable level of performance," he said. "As soon as you start running though, you discover some other problems. So we still have to go through this testing period.
"We are a bit late so we still have these problems, but we are facing them and sorting them out. It is not like the problems we had before, which were very difficult to fix in a period of time.
"Now, it is a matter of looking through the data day after day, and solving them. There is still a bit of work to do. It is still difficult, but we are getting there."