A new engine for Albon


Honda has decided to give Alexander Albon a new power unit for tomorrow's Chinese Grand Prix following his massive crash during FP3 this morning.

Unable to repair his car in time for qualifying, the Thai drivers was forced to watch the session from the sidelines.

"We are all relieved that Alex is fine after his FP3 crash," said Honda's F1 technical director, Toyoharu Tanabe. "As a result of the accident, we are changing the PU and sending the one that was in the car at the time of the crash back to Sakura for a full check.

"At the moment, we do not know the full extent of the possible damage to the various PU elements," he added.

"Alex can still do well tomorrow, starting from pitlane, as he showed a good pace in free practice and overtaking is possible here."

The youngster took full; responsibility for the crash, admitting to being "too greedy" with the throttle.

"I'm disappointed I made a mistake," he said. "It was a big crash, it was a silly one as well.

"Obviously, being quick in FP3 doesn't really help you that much as it's qualifying that counts," he added, having been ninth in FP3 at the time of his crash, "but there are still positives to take away.

"I had been playing around with that Astroturf at the last corner for a while now," he admitted, "because it's a bit quicker using that extra bit of track. It's always a little bit loose and normally you can recover it, but this time I was a bit greedy with the throttle.

"I would have preferred to have spun to the left side of the track, but the car went to the right and I hit the wall. You always get one snap, it's quite normal on the Astro over there, but it snapped, and then it snapped the other way, and once you get the tank-slapper, you're kind of a passenger. I was hoping it would snap left to spin me onto the circuit, but it went right into the wall.

"Looking on the bright side, we had a good FP2 and our race pace looks strong so I'm optimistic about tomorrow's race."

The decision to give Albon a new power unit, comes 24 hours after Honda made a similar decision in favour of his teammate, Daniil Kvyat, who received a new unit after the Japanese manufacturer spotted an irregularity on the data from the Russian's car after FP1.

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Published: 13/04/2019
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