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Honda: No sign of any issues in Alonso’s Belgian GP engine data

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Honda Formula 1 chief Yusuke Hasegawa has revealed there was no sign of an engine issue in Fernando Alonso’s engine data from the Belgian Grand Prix, but opted to retire his car as a precaution on Sunday at Spa.

Alonso reported over the radio that he had an issue with his engine, prompting McLaren to call him into the pits and park him up after 25 laps of the race.

Honda has been struggling for either reliability or performance for much of this season, with a number of problems with its power unit resulting in retirements earlier in the year.

However, Hasegawa confirmed after the race that Alonso’s engine data showed no abnormalities despite his report.

“We thought we had the possibility of scoring some points here in Belgium today, so it was disappointing that we finished the race outside of the top 10,” Hasegawa said.

“After starting brilliantly, Fernando then had a tough race overall. He radioed in with what he thought was a problem with the car.

“Although there was nothing showing in the data, we decided to stop the car as a precaution.”

Eagle-eyed fans noted on Twitter after the race that Alonso’s call regarding his engine came not long after a query about the weather, asking if any rain was on the horizon.

Alonso had vented his frustration about the lack of straight-line speed and power from his car earlier in the race, being left a sitting duck while running P7 after a rocket start.

It is not the first time there has been doubt about Alonso’s report of issues with his Honda power unit, with his retirement late on in Bahrain also being suspect.

Steve Torrence takes NHRA points lead with Gatornationals victory

NHRA Gainesville Steve Torrence
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GAINESVILLE, Fla. — Two-time defending NHRA Top Fuel champion Steve Torrence took the points lead Sunday in the AMALIE Motor Oil Gatornationals, beating his father, Billy, in the final round at Gainesville Raceway.

Torrence had a 3.809-second run at 322.11 mph to win for the third time this year and 39th overall. He is now on track for another championship despite missing the season opener.

“We’ve got some good momentum and to be in the points lead, it’s a testament to how hard these guys work,” Steve Torrence said after the NHRA Gainesville victory. “We’ve just got to stay focused and concentrate on what the task at hand is, and that’s trying to win a championship. These guys give me an unbelievable race car and you just try not to screw it up.”

Ron Capps won in Funny Car, Alex Laughlin in Pro Stock and Matt Smith in Pro Stock Motorcycle.

Capps raced to his second win this year and 66th overall, beating Tim Wilkerson with a 3.937 at 323.12 in a Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat.

Laughlin topped Aaron Stanfield with a 7.068 at 204.76 in a Chevrolet Camaro for his first win this season and fourth in his career. Smith rode to his first victory in 2020 and 25th overall, topping Andrew Hines with a 6.843 at 196.99 on an EBR.