Alonso to get 30-place grid penalty

Chronicle (Zimbabwe) - - Sport Starts Here -

MCLAREN’S Fer­nando Alonso will start Sun­day’s Malaysian Grand Prix from the back of the grid be­cause he is to test an up­dated Honda en­gine.

The two-time cham­pion will get a 30-place grid penalty for us­ing more than the per­mit­ted num­ber of en­gine parts.

Re­li­a­bil­ity prob­lems mean Alonso needed the en­gine to com­plete the sea­son, but it also has up­graded parts.

The new power unit has a lighter en­gine block for bet­ter re­li­a­bil­ity and a re­designed ex­haust to boost ef­fi­ciency.

Alonso, 35, will run the new en­gine in first prac­tice on Fri­day be­fore Honda de­cides whether to keep it in the car for the sec­ond ses­sion.

“We had a plan at the mid­dle of the sea­son which races were the best ones to pay the penal­ties,” said Alonso.

“This one was one of the best be­cause the con­di­tions change here and the rain may come, and also Suzuka is the next one and we want to do a good job there be­cause it is the home grand prix.

“So it was one of the best races to go for the rest of the sea­son with a lit­tle more con­fi­dence. And the last time I started last in Spa I was fifth or fourth af­ter five laps, so maybe in this week­end I am lucky as well.”

At this stage, Honda is plan­ning to run the en­gine only on Fri­day, with Alonso switch­ing back to the same spec­i­fi­ca­tion as team-mate Jen­son But­ton for the rest of the week­end. But it is not im­pos­si­ble the Spa­niard will run the new en­gine for qual­i­fy­ing and the race as well.

The new parts mean Alonso will be us­ing his eighth in­ter­nal com­bus­tion en­gine, tur­bocharger, and MGU-H - the part of the hy­brid sys­tem that re­cov­ers en­ergy from the turbo - and his sev­enth con­trol elec­tron­ics, and en­ergy store (bat­tery).

The only part of his en­gine car­ried over from pre­vi­ous races is the MGU-K, which re­cov­ers en­ergy from the rear axle.

If ev­ery­thing goes to plan, Alonso will use the new en­gine for the en­tire Ja­panese Grand Prix meet­ing next week­end.

At this stage, Honda is not plan­ning for But­ton to use it in Suzuka be­cause it does not want any grid penal­ties at its home race.

Driv­ers are per­mit­ted to use only five of the six con­stituent parts of the en­gine with­out in­cur­ring a penalty.— BBC.

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