Both McLaren drivers will have the latest Honda power unit for Austria

Both McLaren drivers will have the latest Honda power unit for Austria


Both McLaren drivers – Fernando Alonso and Stoffel Vandoorne – will have the latest Honda power unit for Austria. That is the so-called Spec Three.

“At the previous round in Azerbaijan, we were able to bank our first points of the year and I think it brought some brightness into our team. We also tested the updated PU, the Spec Three, with Fernando on Friday and we were able to confirm some progress in terms of the power output. We have proceeded with the mapping back at the factory utilising the data we collected, and we are going to bring the Spec Three for both drivers this weekend. I think we have some improvements in our competitiveness and I am looking forward to seeing our performance in Austria, Honda F1 project manager Yusuke Hasegawa explained.

“The Red Bull Ring is a beautiful, unique circuit surrounded by the Styrian mountains. It is the track with the shortest lap time on the Formula 1 calendar and with only nine corners. However, contrary to appearances, it is a demanding track for the drivers with high-speed corners and you have to be very careful not to make a single mistake for 71 laps.”

“One of the biggest challenges for us is the high altitude. The circuit is around 700m (2,297 ft) above sea level, and the turbo will, therefore, have to spin at a much higher rate to produce the same amount of power. The efficiency of deployment will also be affected. Our strategy for the energy management will be key for the race.”

“We will not stop our preparation until the last minutes, and I hope we have a good race to reflect our progress.”

Alonso commented that he really enjoyed his race in Baku

“Our performance in the race not only showed that the foundations of our car package are strong, but also that our operational team – our mechanics, engineers and strategists – are all racers, poised and waiting to take advantage of any situation. Two points may have been a small consolation after an extremely tough weekend, but, as I said at the time, we’ll take it and use it to drive us forwards.”

“And there are reasons to feel more optimistic about our weekend in Austria. It’s a circuit that’s not as dependent on power as some of the recent races, and I think our car will be better suited to the twists and turns of the Spielberg circuit. I think we’ll be able to push hard.”

“We’ve also got a couple of useful steps coming on the car, including – hopefully – Honda’s revised Spec Three power unit, which I tried during Friday practice in Azerbaijan. Every step is important, so I’m looking forward to a positive weekend where we can once again get everything out of the car.”

Vandoorne also said that the points from Baku were very good for the motivation at McLaren

“I’m looking forward to Austria – it’s a great little circuit that usually produces good overtaking, close racing and unexpected results. It should also suit our package a little better than Canada and Baku”, the Belgian continued.

“I’m hopeful that we’ll be able to make further progress in Austria. We’ve been bringing upgrades to every race. So a problem-free weekend, at a circuit that doesn’t disadvantage us, would really allow us to gain some momentum.”

“Of course, we’re still some way off where we want to be. But a respectable result in Austria would really give the team an added boost.”