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Boullier: Room for improvement everywhere with Honda

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23/12/2016

McLaren's Eric Boullier admits that closing on leaders is going to take time... and lots of it.

While 2016 saw a marked improvement for McLaren and its engine partner Honda - team boss Eric Boullier admits that there is still a long, long way to go.

Though podiums, far less wins, remain a distant dream, the Frenchman insists his team is getting there, but admits that it won't be easy.

"The gap has closed," he told Autosport. "But to get where Mercedes is, you can't just copy and paste, There is a way you have to go through.

"You can't do it in three months or six months but in a few years," he added. "It took Renault time and still they are not on top of the game and they started to develop this engine six years ago.

"If we had the best engine this year, we would have won races," he insisted, a masterpiece of understatement. "We know, the GPS traces tell us.

"There is room for improvement everywhere with Honda," he admitted. "It also drives your chassis development, everything is connected. You can't make a car too draggy if you don't have enough power deployment because you lose time. You have to balance all the time.

"We work as one team with Honda to achieve what we want," he concluded.

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1. Posted by NS Biker, 24/12/2016 0:14

"There is a Latin, rather descriptive phrase for this .... but we'll save the Moderator having to xxx it out.
My take, form the sidelines, is that Renault, Ferrari, Mercedes et al, have all had the same amount of time to design and develop the engine. In the case of Honda, possibly one or two years less, but it is still at least 3 or 4 years.
In the world of technology development, if you are behind someone else, you should be able to catch up in a fraction of the time it took them to get to where they are. Basically through avoiding their mistakes. Getting ahead, is the real challenge.
In Honda's case, they seem to have been bent on inventing their own mistakes without the benefit of having pulled even (or close to it),let alone getting ahead.
If Honda comes around in Australia having delivered another stinker, there should be some major soul searching going on. They need to be close to Mercedes and equal to all the rest by then.
Considering some of the fabulous car and bike engines they have developed in the past, anything less than front of the grid competitive should be unacceptable to Honda brass.
EB may be priming the sponsors and his bosses for another season scratching for points. After 2 years of arrested development, on the power train side, somebody should be feeling the heat and get on with solving the problem.
An earlier note from McLaren was indicating that Honda may supply a second team. This was wrapped in the concept of being able to collect more data and speed up the development process. If this is indeed true, and I suspect it is, then get on with it and sign up Manor. I am sure they would be willing partners (for some $$$ consideration) and they would become development "mules" so to speak. Heck, Honda might be on a first name basis with the owner if RD goes through with the deal.
Ain't it great being on the side-lines. No responsibility, you're always right and the missed opportunities of others further enhance your standing as an armchair expert.
"

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2. Posted by Rock Doc, 23/12/2016 16:11

"Yes a great improvement this year, but still not back to where they were before the switch to Honda. The low hanging fruit are always easiest to get, but they made that look like hard work. Short of a miracle next year will be more of the same."

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3. Posted by ClarkwasGod, 23/12/2016 13:49

"I feel this guy lives in some sort of dream world. Is this "PR Speak" designed to entice would-be sponsors?"

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