McLaren still struggling on day 1 & 2 of testing

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Day 1 of the second test in 2018 didn’t start well for McLaren who suffered two stoppages due to electrical issues as well as some heat related concerns with their bodywork. Managing only 38 laps was not how McLaren would have wanted their day to go and it is starting to look like a case of déjà vu.

Meanwhile, Ferrari hammered out 171 laps with Red Bull and Sauber on their tail at 130 and 120 respectively. Max Verstappen did have an issue with his Red Bull and Renault say that what both McLaren and Red Bull were experiencing were battery system issues. Renault say they are using these test to vet energy store systems and as the drivers only get two for the entire season, it is critical to find the best systems and weed out the ones with potential issues.

Once again, the encouraging team of the day is Toro Rosso and their new Honda engine who piled up another 54 laps with their fastest being .5s off the fastest pace. The team did suffer a brake problem.

I’m still holding my breath but I did say last year that it would not surprise me if Honda move to STR and immediately do better and if McLaren can’t come to terms with the new Renault engine, then it will suggest the issue may not have been purely Honda’s after all.

Pos Driver Car Time Gap Laps
1 Sebastian Vettel Ferrari 1m20.396s 171
2 Valtteri Bottas Mercedes 1m20.596s 0.200s 86
3 Max Verstappen Red Bull/Renault 1m20.649s 0.253s 130
4 Lewis Hamilton Mercedes 1m20.808s 0.412s 91
5 Pierre Gasly Toro Rosso/Honda 1m20.973s 0.577s 54
6 Kevin Magnussen Haas/Ferrari 1m21.298s 0.902s 95
7 Nico Hulkenberg Renault 1m21.432s 1.036s 48
8 Carlos Sainz Renault 1m21.455s 1.059s 91
9 Sergey Sirotkin Williams/Mercedes 1m21.588s 1.192s 42
10 Sergio Perez Force India/Mercedes 1m21.643s 1.247s 93
11 Marcus Ericsson Sauber/Ferrari 1m21.706s 1.310s 120
12 Stoffel Vandoorne McLaren/Renault 1m21.946s 1.550s 38
13 Lance Stroll Williams/Mercedes 1m22.937s 2.541s 86

 

Day two hasn’t started much better for McLaren with an oil leak prompting an engine change but Fernando Alonso did manage to get back out on track to rack up some seriously needed mileage in the morning session. Eventually he stopped again on the on the escape road at turn 7.

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sunny stivala
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sunny stivala

Indications point to Honda having dumped the $100 million they were giving mclaren yearly straight into their development program. While their test engine is raking up miles in Barcelona their Australian intended race engine version is raking up hours alongside another more powerful upgrade engine on two separate dynos in Sakura.
Have read that Renault used a second chassis already, haven’t heard of such strange things for a long time now.
The SF71H showed incredible constant lap times consistency both on medium and soft tyres yesterday.

subcritical71
Member
subcritical71

I feel McLaren we’re in a catch-22 situation with the PU. If they stayed with Honda would the situation have improved this year as it seems to have for Toro Rosso(?). It seems better for Toro Rosso, but the relationship is still fresh. McLaren is also staying positive, but again the relationship is fresh. While some of the problems could be seen as growing pains, they did start development late last year, some are purely QC type problems which are squarely on the teams shoulder (wheel nut, exhaust clamp). The rest is testing, if your not pushing to failure how… Read more »

sunny stivala
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sunny stivala

Burned bodywork around the PU is reminiscent of the holes RBR were frantically drilling and cutting on their rear bodywork in first winter testing in 2014 while screaming Renault was crap which they partially were.

sunny stivala
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sunny stivala

McLaren owners should have stuck to racing camels.

Member

McLaren were brave to make the split with Honda, but it is a gamble. At the moment it looks like the gamble is paying off better for STR than McLaren. STR have been running lots of laps, competitive lap times and (reportedly) high top speeds, whereas McLaren are having reliability problems, low lap counts, and slower top speeds (against the STR and also the other Renault powered teams). I’m concerned for McLaren, as testing has been a pretty good predictor of performance over the hybrid period. Though as you say SubC, only two weeks until season 2018 kicks off for… Read more »

sunny stivala
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sunny stivala

Google click and watch:- “McLaren get in a muddle with tyre selection on day 3”.

sunny stivala
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sunny stivala

Also have a look:- pius gasso on twitter “FERRARI upskirt”

sunny stivala
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sunny stivala

Also have a look, but don’t worry everything is fine. “alessandro on twitter #f1testing working on #Ferrari”.

Member

Yeah…….it’s the Alfa cloverleafs
You get used to being told “don’t worry mate, they all do that”

sunny stivala
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sunny stivala

That might look alarming but nothing more than condensation on a particular cold day. a trained aye will look if it Dissipates/disappears or not, if it does in a short distance it is just condensate/steaming, if it does not and stays put in the air that’s oil burn. This year the engine crankcase breather from oil/air separator (centrifuge) does not discharge into the engine air intake, rules has been changed for it to discharge at the back of the car. All FERRARI engine cars discharges right into the rear crash structure. that is the rear most part of the car… Read more »

Member

Good grief! That looks like amateur hour, what is going on with the McLaren???

sunny stivala
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sunny stivala

I have honestly never have seen a wheel being put on the axle inside out (the wrong way round) in a F1 pit-stop real or practice.