The first day of practice on the streets of Monte-Carlo did not go as planned for the McLaren-Honda team, but Racing Director Eric Boullier is not disheartened as he believes their programme on Thursday was not a real representation of their true performance.
“The morning session was somewhat unpredictable, with an unexpectedly low level of grip that look a little while to understand.
“I also think that today’s results are largely inconclusive, as we fitted in a lot of test work in order to better understand the unique characteristics of the demanding circuit.”
The morning session in Monaco was incident packed and therefore largely disrupted, especially for McLaren driver Jenson Button, who sustained damage to his car when a dislodged grate cover came loose and hit the MP4-31, an incident that the Frenchman hopes will be carefully investigated.
“Jenson was fortunate to emerge unscathed from an incident in this morning’s session when a drain cover smashed into his car. The organisers work very hard to ensure this circuit is as safe as possible, but we need to look into exactly what happened and make sure it doesn’t happen again.”
Despite the disappointment of finding themselves in the same position as they have been at previous races this season, Boullier still believes the Monaco track suits the performance of the MP4-31, and qualifying will bring better results.
“Our focus now switches towards maximizing our performance for qualifying on Saturday – a session which remains the most critical qualifying hour of the entire season.”