McLaren-Honda split appears to move closer after Canada failure
Late engine failure costs McLaren first point of dismal season; Brown says McLaren "can't just sit around and wait for things to come good", while Alonso now expects Baku grid penalties
By James Galloway
Last Updated: 12/06/17 1:04pm
McLaren chief Zak Brown says the team need to be "proactive" and take charge of their own destiny after a fresh Honda engine failure in the Canadian GP left them without a point in F1 2017.
At the end of the same week in which Brown issued what has been interpreted as a final warning to Honda, McLaren missed out on their first point of the season in Montreal when the engine in Fernando Alonso's car expired without warning while running 10th within two laps of the finish in Montreal.
The latest race retirement - McLaren's 10th of the season across their two cars - means they remain point-less at the foot of the Constructors' Championship.
And asked after the race what discussions would be held with the team's executive committee in the coming days, Brown dropped a further hint that a divorce from Honda is on the cards.
"Just talking about what the different options are and the different things that we can maybe do to fix this situation," the McLaren executive told Sky F1.
"This just kind of reinforces that we can't just sit around and wait for things to come good. We need to be proactive in that."
When asked if any announcements could be expected before the next race in Baku, Brown replied: "Probably not, we've got to see how we get over the next few races."
Alonso spent the end of the race in one of the circuit's grandstands alongside the fans after a race in which a series of agitated radio messages from him were again broadcast on the world TV feed.
At one point the Spaniard hit out at "embarrassing power" when running a certain engine mode.
Now, with another Honda failure chalked up, Alonso is expecting a further raft of grid penalties at the next race in Azerbaijan.
"It's a team problem," he told Sky F1. "For us drivers we try to drive as fast as we can, we try to do our best.
"Jenson [Button] started last in Monaco with a power unit change. Here losing the points because of the engine problem, we will probably start last in Baku.
"It's tough times."
A downcast-looking Brown added: "Some people said 'points' but that was a bit of an exaggeration. It should have been a point. [The engine] just let go without any warning.
"It feels like you can probably replay this interview at the lot of races this year."
McLaren-Honda: At the point of no return?
Analysis from the Sky F1 pundits...
Martin Brundle: "McLaren are between a rock and a hard place, they cannot do anything else.They are losing a position, they are losing credibility, they are losing prestige, they are losing money - if it carries on like this.
"So really, it's beginning to look like the only thing to do is to separate from Honda, to let Honda go their own way with Sauber next year and seemingly ask Mercedes for the one engine supply they've got spare since the Manor-Mercedes team went under."
Ted Kravitz: "Zak Brown is clearly laying the foundations, laying the ground work so that nobody is surprised when they announce their divorce from Honda and really consign this partnership seemingly to the dustbin after three years of frustration, and very little reward."
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