Honda puts measures after Verstappen issues; Alonso speaks on Enstone return
The Japanese manufacturer has put up measures in place as the Spaniard talks his return to Enstone.
Honda has put up counter-measures to several issues affecting Max Verstappen in F1 Tuscan GP as Renault shares video of Fernando Alonso visit to Enstone.
While Honda hasn't revealed the exact issues related to the power unit problems of Verstappen in F1 Tuscan GP at Mugello, the Japanese manufacturer has, though, revealed that counter-measures has been put in place to several places which raised the problem.
The key point being that it was not one area but collective trouble which left Verstappen frustrated as the Dutchman faced his third retirement due to a mechanical issue. "After the last triple header, we now start a period of races with the more usual two week break in between," said Honda F1 chief Toyoharu Tanabe.
"Using the time since Mugello, our priority has been to carefully analyse the reason for Max’s retirement in that race. Our investigation revealed that several factors caused the problem and we have been able to apply countermeasures to deal with each of these, with the aim of ensuring the fault does not happen again.
"The Sochi track presents a very different challenge to the last three high speed circuits, Spa, Monza and Mugello. It has some street circuit characteristics, such as several 90 degree turns, but it also has two quite long straights. As usual we will spend free practice optimising PU performance for qualifying and the race and look forward to a trouble-free weekend with all four cars," summed up the Honda F1 head.
As Red Bull F1 chief Christian Horner revealed about Verstappen being briefed of the changes done by Honda, the Dutchman acknowledged the same. "I think it was good for everyone in the Team to have a weekend off but I’m looking forward to getting back to racing, especially after not actually doing a lap in the race at Mugello," he said.
"It is of course not nice leaving a race weekend in that way, especially when I think we had a good chance of more than just a podium but we have to put that behind us. We have of course discussed the issues as a Team with Red Bull & Honda and everybody is working in the same direction and trying to fight for every possibility in every single race that we can.
"I think we made some positive steps with the car at Mugello and it was of course good to see Alex on the podium for the first time. We won’t stop fighting for wins and podiums. It’s not going to be easy in Sochi and it has not been a favourite for us with a lot of long straights and the competition behind will be close."
Fernando Alonso visit to Enstone, Viry:
Earlier in the week, Renault revealed photos of Alonso at Enstone, as he kick-started his preparations towards 2021 F1 season. The Spaniard is now free to work with the French manufacturer for the rest of the season, which is what he is doing.
In a small video which came along with photos, Alonso noted about seat fit at Enstone and also simulator days. He wishes not only to help them for 2021 but also during race weekends in 2020. He is expected to be present for some of the F1 rounds but it is unclear which ones it will be.
At the same time, Renault is pushing the FIA to allow Alonso to be part of the Abu Dhabi tyre test, which this year will also be run as a Young Drivers' test, as COVID-19 pandemic restricted any official running outside the F1 weekends.
"Being back at Enstone was a very good experience, they were very emotional days," said Alonso. "A lot of things have changed; the simulator is new, the wind tunnel has been updated, but a few things are the same: there are the same offices, the gym that I used to visit a lot.
"It was a like a first day at school, with lots of things to learn and get through, but it was very productive. I’ve followed a programme in the simulator, getting used to the car a little, testing the facilities – last time I was here the simulator didn’t exist! Then I had a seat fit and meetings with key people to understand the programme for next year. It was really just getting up to speed. I think the team is in good shape for the future.
"The last few races were encouraging for everyone, for myself too. To see Renault back in a competitive manner is a good thing for the sport and I’ve been delighted to see the improvements. We’ve still got a long way to go and the midfield is very tight but I think the guys have done an amazing job trackside.
"The last couple of races were very exciting to watch and I am looking forward to being back in the mix. I’ll now follow what the team needs from my side – some sim days, helping some weekends and being available for the team for anything they need," summed up Alonso.
Meanwhile, Cyril Abiteboul added: "It’s been great to see Fernando back at the team in person. He’s hugely motivated to have the best start possible. He wants to be very involved in the preparations. Spending three days at Enstone and Viry gave both sides the opportunity to restart those links and set the foundations at a very early stage, which will be critical to hit the ground running in 2021, a key year in our progress as a team."
[Image courtesy: Renault F1 Team] [Note: This story was written on FormulaRapida.net]