“I have rarely had a car so uncompetitive.”
“I’m a second in front of my partner and I’m 13th, that’s the sadness.”
“I want to be on the podium and win races”.
These were some of the statements made by Alonso after the Australian classification and race in which he could not hide his frustration on an MCL32 that can not compete for anything. Their ambition of champion can not be quenched and in McLaren they understand that he criticizes them.
Zak Brown said,
“It’s difficult for everyone, they interview us a lot and every once in a while a little emotion comes out of you and you say something that is misunderstood, but the relationship is very healthy.”
It is logical that when a driver of Alonso’s stature does not win, it must be annoying.
Zak Brown said,
“Fernando wants to be very competitive. If you look at any champion, you are not satisfied unless you are winning, that is why we have them. You might be expected to comment on competitiveness, its not a surprise.
The way out of this is to have the miracle in Honda, to correct the defects and make the engine more competitive. Another option for McLaren is to take the step of changing supplier and culminate those initial conversations with Mercedes, because McLaren will not build its own engine.
“McLaren Automotive is a business unit and we are a racing team and a car builder. What will we do in 10 years? Who knows, but that’s not a Conversation we have had for now. ”
The sports department is one and the Formula 1 team is another, they will not join forces in their engines. What they are going to do now is try to get out of the hole with their Japanese partner:
“We are working very openly with Honda to find the best way to be competitive as soon as possible and ultimately win the World Cup together. So there has been no real tension in the relationship.”
If still there is no tension, then it is very close to being it. To continue like this, will increase the comments of their pilots.
To add to this Eric Boullier recently commented that Shanghai may expose more weakness for McL32. Eric Boullier is direct, he is not a man to cling to excuses. If there are problems, solutions are sought, no excuses. McLaren boss knows they are far from the level they should and before the Chinese GP he does not want to sell smoke or raise false expectations.
The Frenchman pessimistically said,
“Shanghai is long, with long straights and probably exposes all the weaknesses of our package, more than Albert Park did. It’s an unpredictable weekend for several reasons. The circuit is hard with mechanics and tires and I can predict that we will not be as lucky with our pace as we are in Australia.”
The British pessimism crosses the ocean and arrives in Japan.
“China will be a bigger challenge than Albert Park. The track itself calls for much of the power unit in its mid-low speed curves, as well as in straight lines.”
Less resounding than Boullier, but with a similar message: the Shanghai rendezvous does not perform very well for the McLaren Honda tandem. Finally, Boullier does not give up and sends another message to his supplier of power units.
“The most important thing will be to ensure reliability with both cars before focusing on pure performance.”