Renault's technical director James Allison says the team has been very encouraged by the pace shown during the Belgian Grand Prix, although he concedes it will take some races to see if the squad has turned the corner.
Renault put on one its strongest performances in months at Spa, with both its drivers qualifying in the top 10 as the updates introduced by the team in recent events began to work better. Allison admitted the showing has left the team bullish about its chances for the upcoming races.
"We looked much more on the pace in Spa than in the previous four grands prix," said Allison. "Neither driver had an unimpeded race, but the underlying pace of the car was capable of earning P5-P6 given a freer run to the flag.
"We will know for sure whether we have turned the corner once we have a couple more GPs under our belt, however, I am taking some heart from the fact that our competitiveness looked fair throughout the weekend whether on wet, dry or intermediate rubber.
"We have been plagued with extremely poor wet performance in recent races, and to have seemingly put this behind us gives me faith that the upgrades brought to Spa will continue to deliver at other circuits."
Despite leaving Belgium with just two points from ninth place, Allison was adamant the weekend had been one of the strongest for the team in quite a while.
"The team performed extremely well on Saturday in very challenging conditions," he added. "Our race engineers gave us every opportunity to maximize our performance by ensuring we were always out on a clear track when the circuit conditions were at their best.
"Our drivers did a fair job of turning that opportunity into good grid slots. The race was less satisfactory in terms of points garnered, but in terms of competitiveness this was our strongest race for some time."
Allison also praised the performance of Bruno Senna during his first race weekend with the team after having replaced Nick Heidfeld.
"I don't think anyone needs insider information from the team to know that Bruno had a remarkable weekend," he said. "The current regulations place a very high hurdle in the path of any driver coming in midseason, as there is no opportunity to get up to speed in the relatively unpressured environment of the test track.
"On top of that, Bruno had to make his debut for us at Spa, a circuit which definitely separates the men from the boys. Finally, he had to manage qualifying in exceptionally difficult track conditions. To face all these challenges and to place the car P7 on the grid is a fantastic achievement on any scale.
"I know Bruno was kicking himself for the incident at the first corner in the race, but my view is that it was a completely understandable error; it was the first time that he had ever felt the R31 on full fuel and he was surrounded by competitors already 11 races into their season. His subsequent race was run at a very respectable pace and I'm looking forward to seeing him in the car again."