Yusuke Hasegawa insists it is still Honda’s aim in 2017 to overhaul Renault, and that the gaps between all four power unit suppliers are similar across the board.
So far Honda are the weakest of the four, with the McLaren Honda Formula 1 Team struggling for both pace and reliability, but the gap with Renault has closed in recent races, and another upgrade to the package is being brought to the Belgian Grand Prix this weekend.
Hasegawa, the Head of Honda’s F1 Project, believes that the gap to Renault is similar to the gap Renault have on Ferrari, and likewise the gap from them to Mercedes, but from a Honda point of view, their development programme has seen them improve to the level that they were hoping to be at the start of the season.
“It is difficult to tell, but it could be that Mercedes, Ferrari, Renault and Honda have maybe got the same gaps in performance,” said Hasegawa to RACER. “But because we need to evaluate the performance of this car with the chassis, it depends on the circuit characteristics.
“Maybe in Hungary we could say we were very strong even compared to Renault. Not stronger, but closer. Then on a power circuit like Spa or Monza, it still could be tough.”