Since returning to Formula 1 as a motorist, Honda has been widely criticized as its engines have been proving extremely ineffective for a long time.
The McLaren MP4-30 marked the return of Honda as a Formula 1 driver, but the car's performance was catastrophic
This year this trend seems to have finally ended if not reversed, given the excellent performance achieved by both Red Bull and Toro Rosso.
RED BULL RB15
By 2019 Red Bull wanted to prove its competitiveness to Mercedes-Benz and Ferrari by offering numerous aerodynamic upgrades on its new RB15.
Designed by Adrian Newey, the car was based on a frame with a honeycomb carbon fibre structure and used the new Honda RA619H V6 1.6 Turbo 940 hp as an engine driven by an eight-speed sequential gearbox.
The car proved to be extremely competitive, but the main problem turned out to be the second driver. Pierre Gasly first and then Alexander Albon always arrived in points area but have never reached the podium. These results precluded the Austrian team from improving their position in the final standings.
Had the team had another driver of the calibre of Max Verstappen, who achieved three wins and three fastest laps, perhaps the team could easily have ousted Ferrari from second place in the standings. Given the pilots' mistakes and the complete imbecility of the strategy Italian group, it is not difficult to imagine this scene.
TORO ROSSO SRT14
The Toro Rosso season was instead one of the best World Championships I've ever participated in, managing to replicate the result obtained in 2008 when Sebastian Vettel won the Monza GP.
James Key was responsible for creating the new SRT14 by reusing numerous technological solutions taken from the Red Bull RB14. The engine is the same Honda RA619H V6 1.6 Turbo with 940 hp of power combined with an eight-speed sequential gearbox mounted on the Red Bull RB15.
Daniil Kvjat proved to be fairly continuous with the results even managing to get a miraculous third place during the daring GP of Germany. The biggest feat, though, was accomplished by the degraded Pierre Gasly.
The French driver, downgraded by Red Bull in the middle of the season in favour of Alexander Albon due to poor results, managed to win a second place at the Brazilian GP (where he won a razor-sharp duel with Lewis' Mercedes-Benz Hamilton).
This result allowed him to reach a higher ranking than Albon, taking well-deserved revenge on his former team.
The incredible progression of Toro Rosso has left me thrilled, but what did you like most about cars with a Honda engine?
Thank you to Valentina Zanola and Alessandro Renesis for the cooperation