Honda now ‘close’ to 2015 Ferrari engine –

Posted: Saturday, July 09, 2016

Honda used two engine development tokens ahead of the British Grand Prix weekend as it continues its bid to close the gap to the other manufacturers.

Fernando Alonso was sixth quickest in second practice with Jenson Button eighth while Sainz and team-mate Daniil Kvyat were 11th and 13th respectively.

When asked by Autosport to quantify Honda’s progress, particularly in comparison to the old Ferrari-spec, Sainz said: “They are getting very close to us, if not the same.

“They normally have very strong Fridays but hopefully tomorrow we are a bit closer to them.

“I know they are very efficient on the aerodynamic side so it’s difficult to compare the amount of power they have compared to the amount I have.

“But they are definitely doing steps, I don’t know how big, but they are doing steps.

“They are always improving, which is something we know we are not doing at the moment so we better keep them in our sights.”

Honda’s update is aimed at improving combustion efficiency and power output, but it is believed the Japanese manufacturer is not expecting a dramatic increase in the latter.

When asked to quantify the improvement in the engine following the upgrade, Button said: “It’s not going to be 50kW, you are never going to feel a massive amount when you go from circuit to circuit.

“It’s a very different circuit to Austria, it’s very windy out there so you are never going to feel the difference but hopefully they can see something in the data.”

Button missed a chunk of running in second practice because of a power unit problem but took heart from Alonso’s performance.

“We had a few issues to do with the power unit, I can’t tell you what,” said Button.

“It’s nothing that’s an issue long term, it’s number crunching on the laptop.

“I missed a hell of a lot of the session and setup work, we didn’t do anything. A shame.

“But the other car looked competitive so we have got some information to take from that and hopefully we will get a clear run on Saturday morning so I can get some laps in.”

Alonso added: “We’ve been doing some good performances on Fridays and there is still some work to do and some performance to extract from the car for Saturday.

“We need to be ready, very focused to take any opportunity and hopefully we can be in Q3.”


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