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We finally made it!

NEWS STORY
02/07/2019

In five and a half years of the 'new' engine formula, Mercedes has won 82 (75.2%) of the 109 races held thus far. On the other hand, Ferrari has won just 14 and Renault 12.

On Sunday, Honda claimed its first win of the era, and though it has a long way to go before it even catches Renault, it's a start, and certainly a far cry from those three miserable seasons with McLaren.

It was understandable that as Max Verstappen proudly pointed to the badge on his overalls, like a footballer declaring his love for his team, a number of members of the Honda team were overcome with emotion, for it wasn't long ago that many were writing the legendary Japanese manufacturer off.

"We finally made it," said Toyoharu Tanabe, Honda's technical director, "our first win in the hybrid era, the first since Hungary 2006.

"Thanks to Max for a great drive and to Red Bull for providing him with a fantastic car," he continued, "and we must not forget the great contribution made by Toro Rosso, who helped us get back on the right path last year.

"This win is a way of saying thank you to all our fans, all over the world, for their continued support," he added. "We have been back since 2015, but today feels like a new beginning."

Though clearly delighted at this "new beginning", Tanabe is fully aware that it is indeed just the beginning and that there is still a long way to go if one is to talk of challenging for titles.

"While we can enjoy the celebrations for a short while, we must get back to work as soon as possible, because we still need to close our performance gap to the quickest teams," he admitted.

"It's not been easy for them in the past," said Verstappen, "but today it's been incredible, I'm very happy for them. This is very important for us and also for the future, for Honda as well.

"I'm just very happy that it happened today, it gives a lot of confidence to the boys and maybe a few doubts are going away because of it. It's an amazing feeling."

"Getting to this point has not been straightforward since our return to the sport in 2015," added Takahiro Hachigo, Honda's chief executive officer.

"I want to thank all our fans," he continued. "With their support, we will keep challenging as we strive towards our ultimate goal, which is to win the world championship, taking this victory as a first step. Any future success we have is also thanks to our fans who are really a part of our team.

"Formula One was our founder Soichiro Honda's dream and it is in our company's DNA. We went through some tough times over the past five years on the track and in the factory. I am speechless when I think about the enormous effort from all the Honda staff involved in this project, who always believed in themselves and never gave up and finally reached today's victory. I think this embodies our 'Power of Dreams' motto."

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READERS COMMENTS

 

1. Posted by Spartacus, 02/07/2019 22:02

"Good to see Honda put one in the bag! I am sorry it took so long. It seems the McLaren relationship hindered where as the Redbull/Toro Rosso combination has nurtured and flourished the Honda Power Unit!"

Rating: Positive (1)     Rate comment: Positive | NegativeReport this comment

2. Posted by Bill Hopgood, 02/07/2019 19:10

"Nice to see the nod to Toro Rosso's efforts last year and that adds to the positive send off Honda gave to Brendon Hartley too."

Rating: Neutral (0)     Rate comment: Positive | NegativeReport this comment

3. Posted by imejl99, 02/07/2019 9:16

"And they actually made a nice joke on official @HondaRacingF1 -

Engine mode 11

VTEC just kicked in

_____

If anything, illustrates the mood with this partnership(s) vs previous one ;)
Keep working!"

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