Renault reserve driver Sergey Sirotkin will have another Friday practice outing at the upcoming Spanish Formula 1 Grand Prix following his short-lived hit-out on home soil at the Sochi Autodrom.

The Russian substituted for Nico Hülkenberg in Friday’s opening practice session and completed just two laps before his RS17 suffered a hydraulic issue that damaged the gearbox, forcing its replacement.

Sirotkin had driven for the team at last week’s in-season test at Bahrain to prepare for his Russian Grand Prix outing, but will now get a second chance in the Spanish Grand Prix at the Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya in two weeks’ time.

“It was a short run for me in FP1, but that’s motorsport and it’s better to have an issue with the car in practice than in qualifying or the race,” Sirotkin said on Friday.

“There’s not much I can say about [the session] other than I was happy with the car at the Bahrain test and I was fully prepared to deliver everything required. I’m next out in Spain so that’s where my focus now lies.”

Hülkenberg was back behind the wheel for Friday’s second practice session, where he and Jolyon Palmer finished eighth- and thirteenth-fastest respectively.

On top of Hülkenberg’s gearbox change, the Renault team elected to switch Palmer to the spare chassis for the remainder of the weekend after suspicions his original chassis had suffered excessive heat exposure thanks to an exhaust leak the Englishman encountered on Friday.

Image via Renault Sport F1

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Richard Bailey

Founder & Chief Editor at MotorsportM8
Hasn't missed a Grand Prix since 1989. Has a soft spot for Minardi. Tattooed with 35+ Grand Prix circuits.