Formula 1

Lack of Pre-Season Testing ‘Painful’ for McLaren During Honda Era

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Honda mechanical issues left McLaren on the back foot in all three seasons together
Credit: Octane Photographic Ltd

The lack of running during pre-season testing for the McLaren F1 Team during their tenure with Honda was a ‘painful hit’ for the team, according to aero chief Peter Prodromou.

Limited running due to mechanical issues with the Honda power unit left McLaren firmly on the back foot in all three campaigns with the Japanese manufacturer, with it being particularly painful in 2017 with the big changes to Formula 1 regulations.

Prodromou felt the Woking-based team did well to develop their MCL32 as much as they did ahead of the start of last season, but the lack of running in pre-season testing left the team needing to work even harder during the early running of race weekends to catch up.

“It’s really difficult to quantify what that hit was in terms of lap time and development of the car,” said Prodromou on RACER. “It certainly felt at the time it was a big, painful hit for us.

“I think remarkably we still managed to extract, from our testing and from our Friday running in grands prix events, the answers that we were looking for going into the weekend, assuming we were going to be doing a certain amount of mileage.

“The fact that we didn’t, somehow, we managed to come out of the weekend feeling that we got the answers we were looking for anyway. I’m sure it must have counted for something. For sure the more running that you do, the more potential that you have to learn and develop the car.”

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