Yusuke Hasegawa, Honda’s Head of F1 and Executive Chief Engineer, said that McLaren-Honda Formula 1 Team’s goal this weekend will be reaching the third qualifying session for the Hungarian Grand Prix.
The Hungaroring is less than a tenth of a mile longer than Austria’s Red Bull Ring, though has four more corners, making it a track much more focused on skill and agility over speed and heavy-braking – something the McLaren-Honda team believe will give them an advantage this weekend.
“The Hungaroring is a unique twisty circuit that should give us one of our best opportunities this season.” Hasegawa said. “Though it is not a power-oriented track, it still requires precise energy management throughout every lap of the race.
It is also a track where overtaking is extremely difficult, so qualifying will be enormously important for us.”
This gives the team one of their best chances to increase their points tally, and the team feel confident they can achieve this goal with drivers Fernando Alonso and Stoffel Vandoorne.
“We know we’re capable of a good result on this type of track so our target is to reach Q3 and be in a good place to score points in the race. Fernando claimed his first Formula 1 victory at the Hungaroring, and Stoffel won there in GP2 in 2014, so our cars are in excellent hands.”
Hasegawa knows that points finishes can only happen if a car actually finishes – something the McLaren-Honda have struggled to do this season. Despite this, it’s something the team continues to work on and hope won’t be an issue this weekend.
“Despite showing improved competitiveness during the last few races, we’re yet to translate this into on-track results. Having said that, we’re pleased with our current development and we now head to Hungary feeling more positive about the race weekend.“