McLaren's dream turns into another nightmare
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[June 12, 2017]
MONTREAL (Reuters) - For a
moment, McLaren allowed themselves to dream at the Canadian Grand
Prix before the all-too-familiar nightmare returned.
Fernando Alonso, whose Indianapolis 500 hopes had been cruelly let
down by a Honda engine failure last month, returned to the Formula
One fold and was running in 10th place until, again, the Honda power
unit packed up.
The once great former champions, the second most successful team in
the sport in terms of race wins, remain adrift at the bottom of the
constructors' standings without a point after seven races.
"For the first time this season, running in 10th place within
spitting distance of the flag, we dared to hope," said Racing
Director Eric Boullier in the team's post race press release.
"OK, what we were daring to hope for were hardly rich pickings: a
solitary world championship point for Fernando, who had driven
superbly all afternoon, as he's driven superbly every race-day
afternoon for the past two-and-a-half years.
"But, after so much toil and heartache, even that single point would
have felt like a victory. And then came yet another gut-wrenching
"It's difficult to find the right words to express our
disappointment, our frustration and, yes, our sadness. So I'll say
only this: it's simply, and absolutely, not good enough," concluded
McLaren executive director Zak Brown, who has ramped up criticism of
the team's engine partner this week, reiterated that.
"It should have been a point. It just let go without any warning,"
he told Sky Sports television. "It feels like you could probably
replay this interview at a lot of races this year. Very frustrating.
"This just kind of reinforces that we can't just kind of sit around
and wait for things to come good. We need to be proactive in that."
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McLaren's Fernando Alonso in action during the qualifying session.
Honda's F1 head Yusuke Hasegawa said the power unit
had lost oil pressure due to a mechanical issue and would be taken
back to Japan for further inspection.
Alonso brought his car to a halt and clambered into the nearby
grandstands to join the fans.
"I thought to give the gloves to the grandstands but it was a little
bit too far so I thought I would go a little bit closer," said the
The double world champion's season has been littered with engine
failures and grid penalties and he could see little sign of that
"We will start last probably in Baku," he said, referring to the
next race in Azerbaijan. "It's a tough time."
(Reporting by Alan Baldwin in London, editing by Steve Keating.)
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