Fernando Alonso expects the Canadian Grand Prix will be a difficult for McLaren due to their lack of straight-line speed. McLaren is consistently among the slower cars in the speed trap figures this season. Alonso believes the long straights at the Circuit Gilles Villeneuve will expose that weakness despite their strong showing in recent races and the engine upgrade from Renault.
“Obviously we’ve been in Q3 in Barcelona, Q3 in Monaco, he said. – It will be nice to keep that trend in the next coming races and confirm our progress. But I think Canada is going to be challenging. It’s a tough circuit with long straights. Our lack of speed is a penalty there. It will be a good test for us.”
McLaren power unit supplier Renault is bringing a “B-spec” version of its power unit for this week’s race. However McLaren has tended to be slower than other teams using the same engine, suggesting their top-speed shortfall is not just a lack of engine power.
Stoffel Vandoorne said he is not surprised at the team’s deficit to rivals such as Red Bull but believes the team knows where it can make gains.
“We have a clear direction for our team in terms of where the car needs to improve, he said. – I think the past couple of weeks we’ve made a small step forward and I think there’s a big push now in the factory to make even bigger gains over the next few weeks.”