Just a year after all-Renault cars staged their Formule 1 return, Fernando Alonso won the Hungarian Grand Prix. It was a taste of things to come.
Renault makes a big comeback
On 24 August 2003, Fernando Alonso crossed the finish line at the Hungarian Grand Prix behind the wheel of a Renault car, ahead of Kimi Räikkönen’s McLaren-Mercedes and the Williams-BMW driven by Pablo Montoya. Alonso had performed flawlessly after earlier clinching a superb pole position. It was his first Formule 1 win at just 22 years of age. It was also Renault’s first win since it rejoined the Grand Prix circus in 2002.
R23: on the right track
Throughout the season, the Spanish driver and his teammate Jarno Trulli notched up podium places. To bring their cars on to a level with the top teams, the Renault F1 teams at Enstone in the UK and Renault F1 in Viry-Châtillon in France deployed their full talent. Under the guidance of Jean-Jacques, the V10 engine evolved. Still very wide-angled and low-slung, its new design integrated it more effectively into the chassis. Special attention was lavished on reliability, resulting in a very successful season.