McLaren’s testing programme disrupted by engine issues

McLaren’s sorry season took another miserable twist yesterday after further problems with their Honda engine contributed to them missing eight hours of testing in Bahrain.

While Lewis Hamilton – back in his Mercedes after finishing a disappointing second to title rival Sebastian Vettel on Sunday – posted the fastest time, McLaren test driver Oliver Turvey managed only two laps before suffering an engine failure.

Fernando Alonso, who will be replaced by Jenson Button next month in Monaco as he heads for the Indianapolis 500, publicly berated the lack of pace from his Honda engine throughout Sunday’s race before a problem forced him to retire for the third time in as many grands prix this season.

An engine issue prevented his team-mate Stoffel Vandoorne from even starting the race.

And back at the Sakhir Circuit in Bahrain yesterday,  the 30-year-old from Cumbria, broke down after only two installation laps. A water leak was diagnosed as the problem with Turvey then missing the majority of the day as McLaren replaced the faulty Honda power unit.

Turvey returned to the track for the concluding hour and completed a further 15 laps, but he was nearly four seconds adrift of Hamilton’s best lap and slowest of all the 12 times set.

Hamilton suffered his own breakdown in the opening moments of the test.

But the issue meant he lost only 30 minutes of action. The Briton racked up nearly 100 laps before setting the best time of the day.

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