Fernando Alonso says the new McLaren-Honda project is now on the verge of being able to score points.
“We did not have a good start to the season,” Yasuhisa Arai, the F1 boss of the struggling Japanese manufacturer Honda, told Speed Week.
“The path to the summit is steep. But we have left base camp now,” he smiled.
Indeed, although an awful weekend of reliability in Bahrain for Jenson Button meant he could not even take to the grid, teammate Alonso left the island Kingdom declaring that Q3 is the target for Barcelona.
McLaren and Honda are preparing significant upgrades for the first European race of the season.
“We are on the verge of points now,” said Alonso, “and hopefully it will be in Spain or Monaco, where the engine matters less,” he is quoted by El Confidencial.
Japanese Arai, meanwhile, insisted the disastrous start of Honda’s return to F1 has not resulted in sackings.
“No, that’s not true,” he said. “We are still working with the same people.”
Any talk of a sudden leap from points to the podium, however, is premature for now.
“A podium would be a wish or a hope,” said Arai. “We have only four races behind us and 15 opportunities laying ahead.
“We will begin to score later in the season on a regular basis,” he added. (GMM)