Formula 1

Hasegawa Hopeful of Strong Start to 2018 for Honda and Toro Rosso

1 Mins read
Credit: Octane Photographic Ltd

Outgoing Honda boss Yusuke Hasegawa believes they and new partners Scuderia Toro Rosso can hit the ground running, thanks to the Japanese engine manufacturer sticking with the same engine concept in 2018.

However, Hasegawa says Honda will resort to the backup of their 2017 engine if issues affect the 2018 specification power unit, particularly if problems arise during pre-season testing as they did ahead of the problematic final season with the McLaren F1 Team.

An oil system problem left them on the back foot at the beginning of 2017 but there were improvements right through the season, and McLaren began to become regular points scorers at the end of the year, and Hasegawa hopes the reliability is there straightaway with Toro Rosso.

“It’s a great help [to stick with the same concept],” said Hasegawa to Motorsport.com. “We need more performance and reliability. It’s much better at this stage of the season.

“We haven’t decided next year’s complete specification but at least we have a back-up plan, which is the current engine. So I’m sure we can start the season well next year.”

Hasegawa, who will be replaced by Yasuaki Asaki and Toyoharu Tanabe at the end of the year, believes Honda can close to performance gap to their rivals on the grid, but admitted that the 2017 concept change and the subsequent oil system issues left them well adrift early on, and ultimately caused their divorce from McLaren and the switch to Toro Rosso.

“We modified the engine concept from last year to this year,” said Hasegawa. “There’s no doubt it was a necessary update for us. We are thinking it was the right direction.

“The biggest issue is that we didn’t complete the engine in time for [2017 pre-season] winter testing. Although we tried a good thing, we needed more time to complete it.

“We chose almost the same concept as other competitors so from that point of view, there is no reason why we can’t catch up with the others.”

12474 posts

About author
Thirty-something motorsport fanatic, covering Formula 1, Formula Renault 2.0 and Formula 3. Feel free to give him a follow on Twitter at @Paul11MSport.
Articles
Related posts
Extreme EFormula 1Race of ChampionsW Series

Jamie Chadwick, David Coulthard form Team GB for ROC

2 Mins read
Twice-reigning W Series champion and Extreme E driver Jamie Chadwick will team up with F1 alumnus and two-time Champion of Champions David Coulthard to form Team Great Britain in the upcoming Race of Champions.
Extreme EFormula 1IndyCarSim Racing

McLaren Announces Multi-Team Launch Event

1 Mins read
McLaren’s Formula 1, IndyCar and Extreme E teams and the McLaren Shadow eSports team will have their 2022 launches on the same day!
Formula 1

Aston Martin, Red Bull Racing Come to Agreement over Dan Fallows Move

1 Mins read
Dan Fallows will join Aston Martin from Red Bull on 2 April after the two teams came to an agreement over his release from his contract with the Milton Keynes squad.