Honda: McLaren like cuisine; Toro Rosso like Stew

Honda motorsport boss, Masashi Yamamoto, went a mile to effectively say; McLaren is a large company and it can difficult to move quickly in large companies.

“Working with McLaren, I’ve realized that they are a very big company which is very systematic,” said Yamamoto.

“It’s obviously very strong because of that but at the same time they can find it hard to adapt to change.

“Compare that to Toro Rosso, it is a company that is growing. It is very important for us to work in partnership together, heading towards the same goal.

“So for us we are very much looking forward to being able to work closer.

“Take this for an example: If we compare both teams with different cuisines, let’s say McLaren is a very sophisticated French cuisine, that’s the way it is.

“Then Toro Rosso is more like a countryside, homemade, delicious stew where you can add new ingredients. We’re excited to do that.”

The press release offered by Honda to announce their departure from McLaren and arrival at Toro Rosso thanked the FIA and F1 management for making it possible. The point here is that they orchestrated Honda staying in F1 which is huge for the FIA and F1.

Honda wants to be in F1 and perhaps a smaller, nimbler team like Toro Rosso might suit them? The fact is, James Key knows how to build a chassis and if Honda can get on song with their engine, this could be the little team that could.

“First, [Toro Rosso team principal] Mr. Tost knows a lot about Japan. He understands the culture and it’s a good communication that we have,” Yamamoto says. “We have seen that they also have a young factory and are growing, which for Honda is very important because we can work with the same mentality and have the same approach. It is a new start with a team with a similar mindset to move forwards together.”

“Toro Rosso and Honda will start working together immediately and for the coming years. However, before that we have the rest of the 2017 season to complete with McLaren, so a good communication between us is still very important, as well as a good performance in the remaining races.”

The entire Red Bull Racing (RBR) program from the main team through Toro Rosso (STR) is a bit of a question mark at the moment in my opinion. Rumors of Aston Martin coming to RBR or Porsche buying RBR are all making the rounds. The withdrawal from F1 by the Red Bull empire is a serious rumor getting a lot of traction these days. I think the next three years will/could bring a lot of change to the paddock. Will Honda and STR still be there?

Hat Tip: Honda Racing

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An Honda is like 7 day old Sushi.

Guy Fawkes

Red Bull has been threatening to toss their toys for a couple of years now. Even more than other teams/sponsors they feel that if they aren’t winning they aren’t getting their money’s worth. I think that something is definitely in the wind with Porsche and/or Aston-Martin and this Honda move gives them a backup plan if the REAL plan doesn’t come through. But everyone is going into a wait and see pattern until the new regs come in. It’s obvious that the only team who has it figured out is Merc. I hate to say it but two more championships… Read more »

Fred Talmadge

A couple of points…
Honda has had some failures lately, and not just F1, but to write them off is to underestimate them.

How much money does Red Bull make? How much to they spend? I don’t really know or care, but it seems they spend a lot compared to the amount I see used. If I’m right then the sooner you rebalance the better.

Max Johnson

Definitely Matt Bishop award for Honda for the “McLaren can’t adopt to changes” remark. They would adopt better if you engines didn’t fail half of the races.

With that said, I do want to see Toro Rosso succeed, but I guess they are due for a name change.


Its interesting to hear that little old Honda found it difficult working with the racing and industrial monolith that is McLaren.
That kind of goes against the narrative that we’ve had that Honda are slow and inflexible, and not open to external ideas.
I guess time will tell if the loose and innovative dudes at Honda do work better with the new start (?) crew at STR.
I’d still love Honda to come good, let’s home that now they are free from the constraints of McLaren, they can shine! Cowabunga Dudes! ;-)


Couldn’t have said it better myself. The news over the last three years was that Honda was following their 100 year plan and not in a hurry to make things better for McLaren…