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McLaren afflicted with double-DNF gut-wrenching day

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It was an unsatisfactory end to an unsatisfactory weekend for McLaren-Honda, with a painful double-DNF finish to the team's Italian GP.

A late MGU-K change on Stoffel Vandoorne's power unit sent the Belgian to the back of the grid, but a good launch and a good dose of spirited driving saw the McLaren driver move from P18 all the way up to P7 by lap 20.

The 25-year-old was ultimately robbed of a strong performance however when another MGU-K  issue forced him into a painful retirement on lap 34.

A livid Vandoorne extricated himself from his MCL32, dumbfounded once again by Honda's inability to provide a reliable engine.

"To have another problem in a race which was going very well is obviously frustrating," he said.

"It’s pretty difficult to draw positives from a weekend like this. From my side, it had actually been a really positive weekend in terms of my driving and the performance I’ve put in – it’s been very strong.

"The last few races have been very strong for me, in fact. It’s just such a shame to finish with another retirement, and not have any reward for all of that.

"And we’ve had another issue today, but we have to move on.

"I guess it’s possible I’ll have another grid drop in Singapore, although we don’t yet know exactly what the issue was today, despite it looking like a similar problem. We’ll have to wait and see."

Fernando Alonso's day at the office lasted longer than his team mate's stint, although it eventually also ended with a mechanical failure.

The Spaniard drove an aggressive race at the outset, fighting his way up to P11 despite a gearbox issue. The problem worsened however and he was called in with just three laps to go as the team opted to retire his car.

"Our bosses were here today and, unfortunately, we could not deliver a good result. It’s very disappointing to have a double DNF, said Alonso.

"I had problems with upshifting from the very early stages of the race, which at some points was costing me a lot of time – almost a second a lap.

"We tried to fix the issue by changing some settings, but the shifting never worked as it should have, and it hampered my race.

"Starting from the back of the grid was never going to be easy here. We made up a few places during the race, but there was little chance we could make it into the points today.

"Now we are looking forward to Singapore, which is a more suitable track for us."

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