Fernando Alonso is optimistic about McLaren’s chances this F1 season despite the little ‘rear tyre’ incident that he had to suffer on Day 1 of the Barcelona testing.
McLaren have undergone a major change this season, shifting from the rather unreliable Honda engine to a more secured and sound Renault engine for the new MCL33.
McLaren and Alonso have had a pained last 3 years with Honda, as the team has struggled on multiple occasions to complete races, primarily because of the reliability issues of the Honda engine.
McLaren thus announced last season that it was terminating its contract with Honda and that it would be going with Renault as its engine supplier from the 2018 season.
And Alonso has now gone ahead and taken a massive dig at Honda saying that this season they have an engine that is not an experiment.
“What I don’t have is any reason to believe we are not going to be competitive,” Alonso said.
“McLaren is, if not the best, one of the best teams in this sport — not lately, but in history. Therefore, seeing the chassis we had last year, I see no reason why we wouldn’t be competitive this year.
“We have an engine that is not an experiment. It’s a new engine that we have to open up and see what we find out. It’s an evolution from last year and has already won races.
“Plus, there are two other teams with the same engine, so if we have an issue, there are many people trying to solve and many tests that each team can make to try to find a solution that is positive for everyone. So when I put it all in the mix, I see no reason why things would go badly.” he added.
Alonso is clearly happy that there are other teams too that are using the Renault engine and thus he can draw conclusions and set benchmarks with respect to how the other Renault powered teams are performing.
“Not really, not today, but we will do it at the end of every week we will see how many laps they did and what was the pace and consistency. It is difficult to know about fuel loads etc and what they are doing at different times but there will be a benchmark there and something to look at.
“Even this morning when we had an issue with the car and we lost two hours but there were other guys with our engine running so any information or driveability issues or deployment issues they will face the same and find a solution so maybe when you go back to the car you have the solution already thanks to them so it is a very good position to be in and helpful.” he concluded.