“WE’VE DEFINITELY MOVED IN THE RIGHT DIRECTION AS THE DAY HAS PROGRESSED”
TUESDAY 1 AUGUST 2017
Driver Stoffel Vandoorne
Location Hungaroring (4.381km/2.722 miles)
Best lap-time 1m17.834s
A varied first day of testing for McLaren Honda at the final in-season test before the summer break.
In the morning session, the team focused on a number of shorter runs, running through rapid set-up changes and aero correlation tests between laps for swift evaluation. Later on, Stoffel began some longer runs, again focusing on evaluations of chassis handling and stability.
Shortly before lunch, after Stoffel had completed 35 laps, the team stopped the car out on track as a precaution due to a suspected fluid leak, which brought out the red flags. The team did a thorough check of the chassis and power unit, and the leak was traced to the engine. Although time-consuming to locate and rectify – necessitating removal of the power unit for checks – the issue was not serious, and Stoffel was able to return to the track shortly after 16:00.
For the remainder of the afternoon, the team focused on further balance, handling and set-up changes with a variety of short runs on different tyre compounds and fuel-loads. Stoffel completed 72 laps and ran with good pace throughout the day, topping the timesheets shortly before lunch, where he stayed for the majority of the afternoon session before dropping down to second in the dying moments.
“It’s actually been a very productive day for us, despite the stoppage. We’ve put some new things on the car to explore throughout the day and I feel they’ve been positive – we’ve definitely moved in the right direction as the day has progressed.
“It’s good to see that when we bring new parts to the track, they respond and improve the performance of the car. Obviously, this is testing, and it doesn’t mean a lot, but it does give us useful data that we can analyse and help our learning. We have a busy programme over these two days and hopefully after the summer break we can show that we’ve made another step forward and make further improvements for the rest of the season.
“A test after a race weekend is always very valuable for the team, and provides a good opportunity to validate things that did or didn’t go well, and introduce new parts that might have been too much of a risk during the sessions. It’s been a pretty good week for us in Hungary, and positive to be consistently running in the top 10. I hope tomorrow goes well with Lando and we can gather more useful data, before the team starts a well-deserved summer break.”
“Although today was relatively stop-start in terms of both the types of short-run evaluations we’ve been conducting, and a couple of reliability glitches, we still managed to complete a good proportion of our run-plan and gathered some very useful data that will prove very valuable as we continue to develop our package for the remainder of the season.
“Stoffel acquitted himself very well as always, and provided a lot of thorough feedback that will help shape our run-plan for the final day of the test tomorrow. With a 35-degree ambient temperature and around 54 degrees on track, the conditions were particularly tough on the car today, but we were still able to take some valuable learnings from the various tests we completed.
“Tomorrow we welcome Lando Norris into the car to experience his first outing in the MCL32, while we continue with our scheduled test programme.”
HONDA R&D CO. LTD PRINCIPAL ENGINEER
“Today was day one of the post-Hungarian Grand Prix test at the Hungaroring, and the team used the extra track time to try some new parts for the chassis, while we tested some new elements on our power unit. The aim was to collect precious data, and to work on improving both performance and reliability for the second half of the season.
“We had an oil leak issue just before lunch, and lost some track time as a result, but we’re not too concerned –I’d rather find these problems during testing, and the issue itself wasn’t serious.
“Stoffel maintained the momentum from his first point-scoring race of the season at the weekend, and posted the second-best lap time of the day – he was just pipped at the end of the session.
“Tomorrow we’ll continue with our programme and try to make as many gains as we can before the summer break.”
1. Charles Leclerc Ferrari 1:17.746 98 laps
2. Stoffel Vandoorne McLaren Honda 1:17.834 72 laps
3. Valtteri Bottas (Pirelli tyre test) Mercedes 1:18.732 155 laps
4. George Russell Mercedes 1:19.231 119 laps
5. Lance Stroll Williams 1:19.866 138 laps
6. Nikita Mazepin Force India 1:19.910 52 laps
7. Nicholas Latifi Renault 1:20.302 54 laps
8. Sean Gelael Toro Rosso 1:20.341 101 laps
9. Lucas Auer Force India 1:20.563 54 laps
10. Santino Ferrucci Haas 1:21.185 102 laps
11. Max Verstappen Red Bull 1:21.228 58 laps
12. Gustav Malja Sauber 1:21.503 108 laps
McLaren Honda test and simulator driver Lando Norris gets behind the wheel of the MCL32 for the first time tomorrow, for the second and final day of the Hungary in-season test.
Two days (Tuesday 1 – Wednesday 2 August).