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