Canadian GP: Honda buoyed by F1 upgrades, expects McLaren progress

Honda motorsport chief Yasuhisa Arai is confident of "a positive step" for McLaren after using the first of its Formula 1 engine upgrade tokens

Canadian GP: Honda buoyed by F1 upgrades, expects McLaren progress

The FIA confirmed this week Honda had utilised two of its available tokens, and Ferrari three, to make improvements to the power unit.

In Honda's case AUTOSPORT understands the MGU-H was an area of focus, in particular ahead of a run of visits to power circuits, starting with the Circuit Gilles Villeneuve for this weekend's Canadian Grand Prix.

There were enough signs from practice in Montreal for Arai to express his confidence, with Fernando Alonso's ninth place in practice one the day's highlight for McLaren.

"This is a very difficult circuit with long straights and hard braking, and the energy deployment is very difficult for us," Arai told AUTOSPORT.

"But after today we've a very good feeling, and we're positive for not only this weekend, but also the next race and the one after that. I'm quite happy.

"At this moment we have achieved our expectation, and hopefully we can go on to achieve our aim of catching the top teams by the end of the season.

"I feel we have taken a positive step for this race. It's an improvement compared to Monaco."

Arai refused to go into detail over which area the tokens had been used on, but it is believed they are partly for power purposes and partly reliability.

As to the deployment of the remaining seven tokens, Arai concedes there are a number of discussions still to take place.

"We don't have a concrete plan," he added.

"It's very difficult to make a decision.

"We've seven tokens remaining and very soon we have to decide which area need those tokens, but we don't have any plan yet."

While Alonso made it into the top 10 in the morning, team-mate Jenson Button was 15th after initially encountering a gearbox issue.

Come a rain-affected second session, albeit with the teams taking to the track at the start with the super-soft compound as they were aware the weather would close in, Alonso and Button were down in 15th and 18th respectively.

shares
comments
Canadian GP: Lewis Hamilton fastest then crashes in wet F1 practice
Previous article

Canadian GP: Lewis Hamilton fastest then crashes in wet F1 practice

Next article

Daniel Ricciardo: No Canadian GP engine penalty plan for Red Bull

Daniel Ricciardo: No Canadian GP engine penalty plan for Red Bull
Load comments
The line Verstappen finally crossed in F1's first Jeddah race Plus

The line Verstappen finally crossed in F1's first Jeddah race

OPINION: Max Verstappen has made the 2021 Formula 1 championship. He’s taken the fight to the all-conquering Mercedes squad and its dominant champion, produced driving displays few can match. But he’s been on a controversial course too, and finally crossed a particular line in Jeddah

Saudi Arabian Grand Prix Driver Ratings Plus

Saudi Arabian Grand Prix Driver Ratings

An ill-tempered Saudi Grand Prix made Formula 1 more soap opera than sporting spectacle at times, but there were some strong performances up and down the field on the world championship's first visit to Jeddah

Formula 1
Dec 6, 2021
How the Jeddah F1 race became a one-sitting Netflix drama series Plus

How the Jeddah F1 race became a one-sitting Netflix drama series

The inaugural Saudi Arabian Grand Prix was a race packed full of incident as Formula 1 2021's title contenders repeatedly clashed on track. Lewis Hamilton won out over Max Verstappen to level the scores heading into next weekend's Abu Dhabi finale, as Jeddah turned F1 into a drama series

Formula 1
Dec 6, 2021
The impressive attitude that earned Albon his second F1 chance Plus

The impressive attitude that earned Albon his second F1 chance

Dropped by Red Bull last season, Alexander Albon has fought back into a Formula 1 seat with Williams. ALEX KALINAUCKAS explains what Albon has done to earn the place soon to be vacated by the highly rated George Russell

Formula 1
Dec 5, 2021
How Formula E factors could negate Red Bull's Jeddah practice gap to Mercedes Plus

How Formula E factors could negate Red Bull's Jeddah practice gap to Mercedes

Mercedes led the way in practice for Formula 1’s first race in Jeddah, where Red Bull was off the pace on both single-lap and long runs. But, if Max Verstappen can reverse the results on Saturday, factors familiar in motorsport’s main electric single-seater category could be decisive in another close battle with Lewis Hamilton

Formula 1
Dec 3, 2021
Why Norris doesn’t expect Mr Nice Guy praise for much longer Plus

Why Norris doesn’t expect Mr Nice Guy praise for much longer

Earning praise from rivals has been a welcome sign that Lando Norris is becoming established among Formula 1's elite. But the McLaren driver is confident that his team's upward curve can put him in the mix to contend for titles in the future, when he's hoping the compliments will be replaced by being deemed an equal adversary

Formula 1
Dec 2, 2021
What Ferrari still needs to improve to return to F1 title contention Plus

What Ferrari still needs to improve to return to F1 title contention

After a disastrous 2020 in which it slumped to sixth in the F1 constructors' standings, Ferrari has rebounded strongly and is on course to finish third - despite regulations that forced it to carryover much of its forgettable SF1000 machine. Yet while it can be pleased with its improvement, there are still steps it must make if 2022 is to yield a return to winning ways

Formula 1
Dec 2, 2021
How F1 teams and personnel react in pressurised situations Plus

How F1 teams and personnel react in pressurised situations

OPINION: The pressure is firmly on Red Bull and Mercedes as Formula 1 2021 embarks on its final double-header. How the respective teams deal with that will be a crucial factor in deciding the outcome of the drivers' and constructors' championships, as Autosport's technical consultant and ex-McLaren F1 engineer explains

Formula 1
Dec 1, 2021