Renault set to re-use Magnussen’s Spa power unit

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Renault plans to re-use Kevin Magnussen’s power unit from the Belgian Grand Prix after finding it escaped his high-speed crash at Spa without major damage.

Magnussen crashed out of last month’s race in Belgium in a shunt that wrecked the chassis of his Renault Formula 1 car and left the Dane with a cut to his ankle.

The crash was so severe that the race had to be red flagged while the barrier Magnussen hit was repaired and the debris could be cleared.

However, all was not lost from the crash, with Renault finding that his power unit could be re-used after avoiding any serious damage.

Lewis Hamilton recently suffered a sizeable grid drop as a result of excessive power unit usage, but Renault’s Bob Bell revealed the team should not suffer a similar fate this year.

“We’re actually looking pretty strong in that regard,” Bell said.

“One of the real success stories of this year has been how strong the power unit has been, not only though being able to exercise enhanced performance but in the reliability we’ve seen. It’s been a tremendous job from everyone in Viry.

“It’s likely we’ll run Kevin’s Spa power unit on Friday in Singapore or Sepang as it looks like there was no serious damage to it in the accident.”

Looking ahead to next weekend’s race in Singapore, Renault F1 team boss Frederic Vasseur believes teh French marque’s current deficits may not be so pronounced under the lights given the tight and twisting nature of the Marina Bay Street Circuit.

“Singapore is a type of circuit that should suit us better than the ones visited recently,” Vasseur said.

“We can hope for results that are more in line with those achieved at circuits such as Budapest or Spa.

“The last two races have been challenging and character-building for the team in terms of results. Our global performance was good in Spa and we achieved our best qualifying results of the season so far.

“But unfortunately in the race we had Kevin’s accident and we couldn’t convert our qualifying pace into a deserved good result in the end.”

IndyCar disappointed by delay of video game but aiming to launch at start of 2024

IndyCar video game 2024

An IndyCar executive said there is “absolutely” disappointment that its long-awaited video game recently was delayed beyond its target date, but the series remains optimistic about the new title.

“Well, I don’t know how quick it will be, but the whole situation is important to us,” Penske Entertainment president and CEO Mark Miles said during a news conference Monday morning to announce IndyCar’s NTT title sponsorship. “Motorsport Games has spent a lot of money, a lot of effort to create an IndyCar title. What we’ve seen of that effort, which is not completely obvious, is very reassuring.

“I think it’s going to be outstanding. That’s our shared objective, that when it is released, it’s just widely accepted. A great credit both to IndyCar racing, the Indianapolis Motor Speedway, something that our fans love.”

In June 2021, IndyCar announced a new partnership with Motorsport Games to create and distribute an IndyCar video game for the PC and Xbox and PlayStation consoles in 2023.

But during an earnings call last week, Motorsport Games said the IndyCar game had been delayed to 2024 to ensure high quality.

Somewhat compounding the delay is that IndyCar’s license for iRacing expired after the end of the 2022 season because of its exclusive agreement with Motorsport Games.

That’s resulted in significant changes for IndyCar on iRacing, which had provided a high-profile way for the series to stay visible during its 2020 shutdown from the pandemic. (Players still can race an unbranded car but don’t race on current IndyCar tracks, nor can they stream).

That’s helped ratchet up the attention on having a video game outlet for IndyCar.

“I wish we had an IndyCar title 10 years ago,” said Miles, who has been working with the organization since 2013. “We’ve been close, but we’ve had these I think speed bumps.”

IndyCar is hopeful the Motorsports Game edition will be ready at the start of 2024. Miles hinted that beta versions could be unveiled to reporters ahead of the time “to begin to show the progress in a narrow way to make sure we’ve got it right, to test the progress so that we’re ready when they’re ready.”

It’s been nearly 18 years since the release of the most recent IndyCar video game for console or PC.

“(We) better get it right,” Miles said. “It’s something we’re very close to and continue to think about what it is to make sure we get it over the line in due course.”