McLaren’s pre-season campaign got off to the worst possible start as Fernando Alonso completed just one lap before stopping with an engine issue on the opening day of Formula 1 pre-season testing in Spain..
While the new era of Formula One roared back into life at a sun-blazed Circuit de Catalunya on the outskirts of Barcelona, Alonso was forced to watch the opening morning from the sidelines.
McLaren who have won 12 drivers’ championships and eight constructors’ titles, are desperate to return to the front of the grid.
But Alonso, the double world champion who is out of contract with McLaren at the end of the year, managed just one lap of the Barcelona circuit.
McLaren are unsure whether they will be able to fix the problem before the day’s action concludes.
“We have an oil systems issue which requires a full investigation,” a spokesperson for their engine supplier Honda said. We plan to run again today, but due to the difficult access location it will take several hours to resolve.”
Ferrari driver Sebastian Vettel ended the morning session fastest of all, with Mercedes new driver Valtteri Bottas setting the fastest time and completing more laps than any other driver during the first stanza.