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You know things may not be working out at planned when you work for a team powered by Honda and tell the press that you’d be winning races if you had a Mercedes power unit. That’s what McLaren race director Eric Boullier told Spanish publication AS when pressed for his thoughts on if McLaren would be winners if they had a Mercedes engine.

This compounds the already tense situation when McLaren driver Fernando Alonso said:

“We have only one problem which is the power unit,” said Alonso.

“There is no reliability and there is no power. We are 30kph down on the straight.”

It’s not a good time for McLaren but it’s also not an easy situation to remedy either. In a long-term contract with Honda, it’s not as if the team can easily put another engine in the back of their chassis so they are stuck. Stuck with an underperforming engine.

It’s a shame in that McLaren are unable to make best use of their biggest weapon, Fernando Alonso. At some point, McLaren will have to have serious conversations and pressure applied to Honda because three seasons of toiling around at the back just isn’t what McLaren are in F1 for.

Who knows? Maybe the loss of Manor Racing means there’s a spare Mercedes power unit customer supply contract itching to be signed? Something tells me Toto Wolff wouldn’t be too keen to see a Mercedes engine in the back of a McLaren having left the team three years ago.

Hat Tip: Sky Sports F1

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An F1 fan since 1972, NC has spent over 25 years in the technology industry focusing on technology integration, AV systems integration, digital media strategies, technology planning, consulting, speaking, presenting, sales, content strategy, marketing and brand building.

  • Salvu Borg

    “McLaren would be winning if they had a Mercedes engine” Not according to Ron Dennis.
    I am sure that if Dennis was still around Boullier would not dare let such a fart slip out of his mouth.

    • the Late Idi Armin

      that maybe why Ron isn’t at Mac’s anymore. Tied to a boat anchor marked H and turfed overboard. So the search for a new engine starts?

    • Zachary Noepe

      I was Ron hadnt been fired it would have been more fitting punishment to make him stand around and explain this mess.

  • bobmendon

    I’d be rich if I wasn’t poor. Instead of saying stupid stuff, hold Honda’s feet to the fire!

  • Zachary Noepe

    Well then I guess that makes them pretty stupid for having a Mercedes engine and thinking they were too damn clever for it.

  • ali

    Apart from the £100 mil and free engines Mclaren recieve what a waste of 3 years. Honda do make more types of engines than any other manufacture but they have been out of F1 engine manufacturing for over 5 years!! Honda are too arrogant to listen or consider outside sources. The problem is there is no where for Mclaren to go apart from an existing engine supplier which will be a B-spec or start again with a new entrant. Continue with Honda this year and maybe next, persuade BMW to come back and start developing now

  • Cristoff17

    Merc left Mac and started winning. Mac changed engines and dropped further back… Me thinks it’s Mac not Merc that’s the problem here.

  • Maybe the Honda F1 engine team should talk to their IndyCar counterparts. ;)

  • jakobusvdl

    Yeah right, Zak’s a funny guy.
    I guess he has to tell a few porkies to keep morale up in Woking, and persuade Honda to tip more resources into their p.u programme.
    Long term, if McLaren want to win championships, they need to be some p.u suppliers main team.
    Mercedes, Ferrari and Renault all have their own teams, so Honda is the only game in town, if championships remain their goal.