MCLAREN SPLIT FROM HONDA AND SWITCH TO RENAULT

Daily Sabah (Turkey) - - Sports -

For­mer cham­pi­ons McLaren will swap their Honda en­gines for Renault ones at the end of the For­mula One sea­son af­ter call­ing time on a trou­bled three­year part­ner­ship marked by frus­tra­tion and fail­ure. Honda will stay in For­mula One, re­plac­ing Renault as en­gine sup­plier to Red Bull-owned Toro Rosso whose Span­ish driver Carlos Sainz moves to the French team on loan for the 2018 sea­son. The ma­jor shake-up, an­nounced at the Sin­ga­pore Grand Prix on Friday, ends McLaren and Honda’s dream of recre­at­ing the glory years of the late 1980s and early 90s when Ayr­ton Senna and Alain Prost were dom­i­nant. “For a com­bi­na­tion of rea­sons our part­ner­ship has not flour­ished as any of us would have wished,” McLaren ex­ec­u­tive di­rec­tor Zak Brown said in a state­ment. “It is cer­tainly not for the want of ef­fort on the part of ei­ther Honda or McLaren, but the time has come to move ahead in dif­fer­ent di­rec­tions.” The 36-year-old Spa­niard, who won his world ti­tles with Renault in 2005 and 2006, was not men­tioned in the state­ments but has made hav­ing a com­pet­i­tive en­gine a key de­mand. McLaren and Honda re­vived their part­ner­ship at the start of 2015 amid a burst of op­ti­mism but that bub­ble was swiftly pricked. Honda has strug­gled to catch up with ri­vals and mas­ter the sport’s com­plex turbo hy­brid en­gine reg­u­la­tions. McLaren are now ninth out of 10 in the con­struc­tors’ stand­ings and have scored only 11 points from 13 races. SIN­GA­PORE / REUTERS

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