Alonso stuns by earning seventh on Barcelona grid for McLaren

Solenn Plantier
Mai 18, 2017

Fernando Alonso's beleaguered McLaren-Honda Formula One auto didn't even make it through its own out-lap during Free Practice 1 for the Spanish Grand Prix. The Formula One race will be held on Sunday.

The engine of his MCL32 let out a lot of oil before returning the soul in a thick cloud of smoke, as he began his first lap on the track.

Hamilton won at the Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya in 2014, one of 10 different winners in as many years at the race often used by teams to bring major upgrades to their cars.

"The poor show in the afternoon session was due to the fact that first of all, you need to calibrate the engine when you put in a new power unit, so in the first couple of runs the power was a little bit inconsistent", said Alonso.

New balls, please. Or, a new engine please, in the case of the grotty McLaren Fernando Alonso was briefly driving in front of his home fans on Friday.

"That is the plan, but I can not promise it yet", said Honda's Yusuke Hasegawa. From corner to corner, sometimes you break in the same spot, but you tail off because of a tailwind. "It's tough, but tougher for McLaren, who bring updates trying to find a millisecond here and there and we can not even run".

Alonso tussled with Felipe Massa on the opening lap with contact pushing him off the track.

Alonso is enduring a wretched start to the season.

While not overtly critical of McLaren's beleaguered engine suppliers, Alonso's assessment underlines the extent to which the unreliable and underpowered Honda engine is now handicapping the team.

So much finger crossing for signs of progress appears wishful thinking for a team that has yet to score a point.

The Spaniard hoped that his performance would lift spirits within the McLaren-Honda camp after a hard start to the season, adding: "I'm happy for the team as well because they work so much".

Alonso will miss the next F1 race in Monaco to contest the Indianapolis 500, and said he is likely to make a decision about his future after summer.

As for the rest of practice, Lewis Hamilton was 0.029 seconds quicker than his Mercedes team-mate Valtteri Bottas in Barcelona. After marshals rolled him back to his garage, his mechanics quickly fixed the problem and he went back out.

Max Verstappen, the 2016 victor at a record age of 18, and fellow Red Bull driver Daniel Ricciardo will start the race from fifth and sixth on the grid.

D'autres rapports CampDesrEcrues

Discuter de cet article