Honda is confident the upcoming races in Barcelona and Monaco will provide a chance of improved results for McLaren.
A tough start to the season saw McLaren pick up just one point from the opening three rounds, courtesy of Stoffel Vandoorne in Bahrain. Russia finally saw a solid points haul with Fernando Alonso finishing sixth and Jenson Button tenth, but Honda's head of F1 project Yusuke Hasegawa believes the next two circuits are more suited to McLaren’s strengths than the previous two tracks.
“From a power unit point of view, Shanghai and Sochi are tough circuits for the power unit and Barcelona and Monaco are more technical circuits so I would expect more results of course,” Hasegawa said. “But at the same time normally before Europe most of the teams update their cars so I don’t know the position for us at the next race. But we are expecting updates of course.”
And Hasegawa believes the result in Russia shows how closely matched McLaren is with a number of other midfield teams.
“I think we are in the middle group so maybe we can fight with Toro Rosso, Force India and Haas. If we can jump up to the top of that group we can score points and if we are at the bottom of that group then there’s no chance.”
McLaren has yet to reach Q3 since the return of Honda to Formula 1 at the start of the 2015 season.