Honda upgrades turbo
McLaren will have an updated turbo charger for this weekend’s Canadian Grand Prix. Honda decided to spend two tokens on the new turbocharger with the update focused on improving harvesting efficiency.
This will be there third turbocharger of the season with Honda boss Yusuke Hasegawa saying he was encouraged by dyno results back at the factory in Sakura.
Hasegawa acknowledged further testing was required before Honda felt comfortable confirming the token spend and therefore it left it as late as possible to make the decision.
Also fuel supplier Exxonmobil is supplying the team with a new fuel which will help the Honda power unit to deliver a small boost in horsepower.
It’s the Japanese manufacturer’s first use of the tokens this season leaving twelve more for upgrades later. Ferrari had already confirmed that they spent two tokens ahead of the race leaving four for the rest of 2016. Mercedes have eleven and Renault spent three in Monaco leaving it with fourteen
No plan to change philosophy – Smedley
Williams’s performance director Rob Smedley says the team has no plans to change their design philosophy away from high speed to low speed tracks. The team struggled at the last race in Monaco with a lack of performance.
Smedley says with Monaco only being one of the few the team needs to accept those races will be tough and instead focus on the bigger picture.
“We always correlate well with the higher the speed of the circuit, the higher the average speed. That always plays into where we have developed this car and where we will continue to develop it.” Smedley told Autosport.
“We think it gives us more benefit than developing down to efficiency levels of Monaco and Singapore, places like that.” He says with Montreal, Austria and Silverstone coming up which are high speed the team will benfit from high speed.
But with other circuits like Baku and Singapore the team will be expected to struggle. However Smedley believes the team has made progress in that area and had the set-up in the right ballpark.
He added “We got a point which is good and we were a million miles away from a point last year. But I think how much we’ve improved has been marked and we could have actually got a few more points, so it’s a bit disappointing.”
He said that the team were still learning how they should use the car and they “are looking for small incremental gains to get us up to a better level than where we are now, like where the Force India was in Monaco.”
Ricciardo hoping of an epic battle
Daniel Ricciardo is hoping he can put the disappointment of Monaco behind him by having an epic battle in Montreal with Mercedes Lewis Hamilton. The red Bull driver took his first pole of his career in Monaco only to lose the race to Hamilton.
Ricciardo will be one of the challengers to Hamilton in this weekend who will be the favourite going into the race as he has won the race more than another driver on the grid. But the Australian believes he can be a contender, particularly at a track where the weather can act as a leveller. Temperatures are forecast to be cool with some rain.
“Now that I’ve sort of got over Monaco, I just want to get back in the car and basically smash it and get amongst it. You’re going to see the same intensity that you saw in Monaco. I plan on keeping that up and not letting anything else get in the way” Ricciardo said on social media.
Renault engine will be a boost this year after they have shown major progress and have looked strong in Barcelona and Monaco. Montreal is similar to these circuits. If Red Bull were to win they would draw with Mercedes on the number of wins.
Haas regained form – Steiner
Haas’s team principal Gunther Steiner says that the team has regained the form the team had at the beginning of the season. The American team scored points in their first two races before a down turn in performance in recent races but did take a few points in Sochi.
But speaking to Autosport Steiner feels his team are back on track. “In just doing the test in Barcelona after the Spanish Grand Prix we gained back confidence in what we were doing,” said Steiner.
“In China and in Russia we struggled with finding the proper working range of the tyres. Now, we just have more confidence in our whole package. We’re back to where we were at the beginning of the season.”
Romain Grosjean who scored the points told the magazine “The car reacted much better to what we were doing, and to my driving style. That was a good thing, and a good direction. We got back to more common settings and worked from there.”
The team has taken a different strategy going aggressive with the team taking ten sets of the ultra-soft compound – two more than any other team – and three sets of soft, while completely ignoring the super-soft. Steiner admitted this was a gamble and now it is a question of trying to make that pay off.
Confident of being ahead of Ferrari – Verstappen
Max Verstappen has confidence that Red Bull will stay ahead of Ferrari at this weekend’s Canadian Grand Prix. Writing on his website he said “There are definitely opportunities for us”.
“Mercedes is still too strong, but we should be able to beat the Ferraris so I’m racing for a podium,” added Verstappen.
He said following his high in Barcelona and then his crashes in Monaco there “there was a bit of criticism, but I think it’s good to share criticism. In the end, it just makes me better. If they only say ‘it happens,’ then I won’t learn a thing.”
Hamilton donates race suit to charity
Lewis Hamilton has donated one of his race suits to his local air ambulance the Essex & Herts Air Ambulance Trust (EHAAT). Fans have until the end of the month to bid on his suit which will be auctioned off at Charity Fundraising Dinner ball in Elmdon on July 9.
Speaking to local media the three times champion said “Hertfordshire is my home county. I have family connections to the area, so I’m delighted to donate a race suit to such a worthy cause.”
“I won a race wearing it last season, so I hope it will have similar good fortune when it is used for fundraising.” The CEO of the charity Jane Gurney added “He was very generous in donating the suit to the Essex and Herts Air Ambulance Trust.
“The money raised from the auction will go towards ensuring our two helicopters, doctors and paramedics can continue to respond to emergencies across the two counties.”