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Hasegawa: "Honda was not ready for top team"

  • Published on 28 Nov 2017 15:55
  • comments 3
  • By: Rob Veenstra

Despite the McLaren split, Honda thinks it has finally found the right direction in F1. Although the Japanese marque was effectively dumped by the top British team, Honda's Yusuke Hasegawa is optimistic about the new partnership with Toro Rosso.

"The hardest year was undoubtedly the first, but also the third year was not easy," he told Speed Week. "But I think we were able to recover a bit faster than in previous years."

It means he now has no doubt that Honda will eventually get to grips with F1 in the new era. "Motor sport means everything to Honda. It's part of our DNA," Hasegawa insists. "We know that racing is tough sometimes, but it's that challenge in terms of performance and technology that motivates us. So it doesn't make sense to give up half way. That does not fit with our mentality."

The Japanese also said he thinks Toro Rosso is a better fit for Honda. "Toro Rosso has not been around as long and so they are more flexible," said Hasegawa. "It is easier to exchange opinions. McLaren is a top team, and Honda was not ready for a top team. That's a fact."

But he also admitted that 2018 will be tough, especially in light of the ever more tightening long-life engine rules. "Technologically it is not easy and it gets even harder," said Hasegawa. "But we are already working very well with Toro Rosso. For us it is very important to stay in formula one. We must continue to dream of becoming world champion," he added. "That's our motivation and what keeps us going." (GMM)

Replies (3)

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  • If Honda thinks Toro Rosso are going to put less blame / Pressure, they are not paying attention.

    • + 0
    • Nov 28 2017 - 20:30
  • It was a mistake to go directly in with McLaren, and it was a mistake to enter in 2015, as unprepared and scattered as they were. It was also a mistake to go in with Arai as a boss, the old sod clearly had a dose of the Dennis. Its a bit odd to me how they still struggle in F1 when they usually tend to be at least somewhat competitive very quickly in any new series they enter (look at the NSX they entered in endurance racing), and I legit think they have the potential to overtake Renault, but time will tell. I mean, looking at how Honda improved after the midway point of this season, while Renault only seemed to spiral down, isnt necessarily indicative of how the next season will go, but I think it shows that Honda is committed.

    • + 0
    • Nov 28 2017 - 20:52
  • Toro Rosso has zero chance of getting through the entirety of 2018 season with only 3 Honda engines. They'll be turned down to 'Civic' levels to get through.

    • + 0
    • Nov 30 2017 - 19:05

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