Hungarian GP points real start of McLaren's F1 season - Honda

Honda believes McLaren's double-points finish in the Hungarian Grand Prix has signalled the real start to the alliance's Formula 1 season

Hungarian GP points real start of McLaren's F1 season - Honda

Honda's return to F1 has been under the spotlight this year, with Jenson Button and Fernando Alonso taking big penalties in Austria last month for exceeding their power unit allocation.

But reliability has started to improve recently, with Alonso and Button able to take advantage of a chaotic race at the Hungaroring to finish fifth and ninth.

"We've got two cars in the points for the first time this season, so our season has now really started," Honda motosport chief Yasuhisa Arai told AUTOSPORT.

"A bigger force has helped us. We're very, very lucky."

Arai was pleased with how the outfit performed across the weekend, with an electrical problem for Alonso in qualifying the only blot on its copybook.

"On Saturday I was very disappointed, but on Sunday there was a change and we had a very good situation," said Arai.

"Fernando is a fantastic, great driver. The day was perfect.

"Over the weekend the engine data was fine, although we had a small issue on Saturday, but now perfect."

While the teams will close their factories for the mandatory two-week summer shutdown before the Belgium Grand Prix, Arai said Honda will keep pushing as it looks to boost the performance of its engine.

"On the control side things are very good, so we will apply more power output for Spa and Monza, both power circuits," he said.

"We want to compete at the top so we have to chase."

"We don't have a holiday. We have a good summer, but no vacation. We will still be pushing hard.

"Although the teams shut down, we still have to work. We will still be pushing hard."

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