Boullier praises Honda for “commendable reliability” in Russia

© Getty Images

McLaren racing director Eric Boullier was quick to praise power unit supplier Honda following a trouble-free weekend for the team at the Russian Grand prix.

At a track that was not expected to suit the McLaren-Honda MP4-30 car, drivers Jenson Button and Fernando Alonso charged to a double-top-ten finish, taking the checkered flag in ninth and tenth place respectively.

McLaren has encountered a number of difficulties with its Honda power units in 2015 after reforging its partnership with the Japanese manufacturer in the off-season, but Boullier was pleased with the performance in Russia.

“Rarely, if ever, have two world championship points been harder earned or more richly deserved, for Jenson and Fernando both drove the wheels off their MP4-30s in Sochi,” Boullier said.

“This circuit isn’t one that suits our car well, and our boys duly found it difficult to defend their positions on the straights in particular.

“But they didn’t put a foot wrong all afternoon, finishing ninth and 10th on the road, and I’m delighted that, as a result, we were able to score another points finish, even though sadly Fernando later lost his 10th place in the stewards’ room.

“I’d like to say ‘well done’ to our friends at Honda, whose power units again performed with commendable reliability.

“We’ve got a lot of work still to do, but the good news is that, together, we’re successfully doing it.”

“Next up is the United States Grand Prix at Austin, where we’re hoping to continue making steady progress. We know we’re not where we want to be yet, but we’re getting there.”

McLaren remains ninth in the constructors’ championship with four rounds remaining in the 2015 Formula 1 season, with closest-rivals Sauber 15 lying points ahead.