McLaren’s Fernando Alonso has slammed Honda for its poor performance this year and says the automobile giant risks its reputation.
The Spaniard suffered an engine failure on his first lap in practice at the Spanish Grand Prix, the latest in a series of problems for Honda in 2017.
Alonso, who has half his $40m (£31.1m) salary paid by Honda, has had engine issues in three of four races.
“It is not my career, my ability, my image [at stake]. It is their career, ability, money and image,” Alonso said.
“I try to support the team and drive as fast as I can, but the problem is not entirely mine. It is much bigger for them.”
As well as Alonso’s problems, team-mate Stoffel Vandoorne received a grid penalty at the last race in Russia because he had already used more engine parts than is allowed for an entire season.
Alonso, whose engine failed on his way to the grid in Russia, said that his problem on Friday was “in a way not a surprise”, adding: “In Russia on Sunday we could not manage to complete the formation lap and here we would not complete the out lap.”
He said he hoped that the engine would prove reliable in the race – the reverse of what has happened to him at previous grands prix this year.