McLaren duo set for grid penalties


One can be certain that for Fernando Alonso and Stoffel Vandoorne, the end of the season cannot come quickly enough.

Not so much because there are places they would rather be, but rather the fact they can finally say Adios and Au Revoir to their wretched Honda powerplants.

For just days after the Belgian started from the back of the Austin grid and his Spanish teammate subsequently retired from the race, the pair both face 35-place grid penalties as Honda opts to change the entire units in both cars.

With the characteristics of the Mexico City track unlikely to suit the car or engine, McLaren is hoping that taking the hit this weekend will pay off in the remaining races in Brazil and Abu Dhabi… though we wouldn't bet on it.

"Unfortunately I think we'll have to change the engine again, so we will start at the back," Alonso told reporters. "Probably this circuit is not the perfect one for our package anyway, so we expect not to be super competitive here, so maybe it's the best place to take the penalty, and hopefully invest in Brazil and Abu Dhabi with this new engine."

"We're taking some engine penalties this weekend," confirmed his teammate, "because we know it's a tricky weekend for us. I think for me it will be the full package, so 35 places.

"Hopefully it should be the last," he continued, "we knew that this was going to be a difficult weekend for us in terms of performance, and we were always planning to take an engine penalty here to kind of protect the last two weekends, where hopefully we should have more opportunities.

"To be honest, I know how to deal with these situations now!" he smiled. "Obviously it changes the approach to the weekend, because you're not necessarily focussing in extracting everything out of qualifying, it will be much more biased to preparing for the race."

Check out our Thursday gallery from Mexico, here.

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Published: 26/10/2017
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