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Vandoorne facing Sochi grid penalty

NEWS STORY
28/04/2017

As one issue appears to be resolved so another raises its head, as Honda's misery, and thereby McLaren's, continues.

In the wake of the MGU-H issues that plagued the team in Bahrain, Honda came to Sochi in a much more confident mood, boosted mainly by the second day of testing last week in which Stoffel Vandoorne not only finished fourth quickest but completed 81 trouble-free laps.

The improvement was down to the fact that Honda appeared to have resolved the MGU-H issue and consequently both McLaren drivers were provided with updated units for this weekend.

However, the Japanese manufacturer detected an issue on the Belgian's car during FP1, and while the problem is thought to involve the MGU-K it was thought best to change the entire power unit rather than just the faulty element.

While the latest-spec engine features the updated MGU-H, it will take Vandoorne over the allowed limit in terms of turbocharger and MGU-H, thereby incurring a 15-place grid penalty for Sunday's race.

Honda's previous boss, Yasuhisa Arai, famously referred to the various issues as like playing "Whack-a-Mole".

"As soon as we resolved one problem, another popped up," he admitted, shortly before making way for Yusuke Hasegawa.

Over a year later and that mole still appears to be causing mayhem for the Japanese manufacturer.

Check out our Friday gallery from Sochi, here.

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