McLaren Racing Director Eric Boullier spoke scathingly about Honda’s latest engine failure at the Formula 1 Canadian Grand Prix as Fernando Alonso was denied his first point of the season on Sunday.
Having returned from the Indianapolis 500, the two-time champion was in 10th place with three laps remaining when his engine failed and he was forced to retire. Alonso climbed into the grandstands to join the fans as his MCL32 was rolled away by the marshals.
“We dared to hope,” said Boullier.
“For the first time this season [we were] running in 10th place within spitting distance of the flag.”
“OK, what we were daring to hope for were hardly rich pickings: a solitary world championship point for Fernando, who had driven superbly all afternoon, as he’s driven superbly every race-day afternoon for the past two-and-a-half years.
“But, after so much toil and heartache, even that single point would have felt like a victory. And then came yet another gut-wrenching failure.
“It’s difficult to find the right words to express our disappointment, our frustration and, yes, our sadness.
“So I’ll say only this: it’s simply, and absolutely, not good enough.”
Head of F1 at Honda, Yusuke Hasegawa, said, “Unfortunately, with just a couple of laps remaining, Fernando’s [power unit] lost oil pressure due to a mechanical issue.
“We won’t know the exact cause until we get the power unit back to Sakura for a full investigation.
“There is still a gap between us and our competitors, and we must continue to improve our reliability. We cannot stay in our current position and we will maintain our tireless development in order to close the gap.”
McLaren remains last in the contructors’ championship without a point with Alonso requiring a third engine change before the race in Azerbaijan on June 25.
“I am frustrated, of course, but it’s not only about losing a point today, of course,” said the Spaniard.
“As a driver, we try to come here and drive as fast as we can, so missing on that point is disappointing especially for the guys, who have been working so much day and night, preparing the car, preparing the strategy and taking care of every single detail.”
“Our chassis feels quite strong in the corners, but we are being overtaken by everyone in the middle on the straights. It’s tough times.
“The support we have from the fans in Canada is great, so when my car stopped I thought we should give something back, and I went up the grandstand to give my gloves to the people who had been cheering me on.”
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