Honda to upgrade engines at Baku for Red Bull and Toro Rosso

Honda RB

Honda Racing F1 Team decided to launch new power plant for their F1 customers Red Bull and Toro Rosso. They will be introducing their first engine enhancement of this years Formula 1 season at Azerbaijan Grand Prix.

The upgrade being introduced was taken up by them after a quality control problem was diagnosed.

Max Verstappen, Red Bull’s hope for championship title, along with his team mate Pierre Gasly will start their Baku’s race with the new combustion engine. Toro Rosso will also launch its drivers with the same engine upgrade.

Honda commended the V6 upgrade and accounted the benefits as “improved durability, life and better reliability” and “a slight improvement in performance”.

Toro Rosso drivers, Daniil Kvyat and Alex Albon, availed their second engine  opportunity as per the rules. The engines were replaced in Chinese Grand Prix.

In China, final practice heavy crash led to Albon using his second engine of the season. While Kyvat had to shift to another engine after the first practice session, because of engine problems.

The investigations into engine problems faced by Kyvat, led to discovery of “quality control issue”.

The discovery of this problem placed the Honda in a condition where it asks the teams for an engine change.  The manufacturer has asked for a replacement in all four cars before the start of the fourth race of the season in Baku.

Kyvat and Albon had consumed their penalty free engine replacements. For any further replacement will require grid penalty for both of them.

According to rules, drivers may use three combustion engines per season along with three turbos and MGU-Hs. Additionally they are allowed two MGU-K, control equipment and energy storing units.

Red Bull and Toro Rosso were expected to fall into penalty zone for their engine commitments to Honda. Because the manufacturer is ambitious to push for dominance against Mercedes and Ferrari.

An early replacement of engine at the fourth race will most probably lead to a cumulative usage of four units for the Red Bull drivers Verstappen and Gasly by the end of the season.

Traditionally the Formula 1 leading engine manufacturers, Ferrari and Mercedes, has bench-marked the seventh race in Canada as their first up-gradation event.

But Baku’s track is stringent which requires the team to exploit their units both combustion and recovery systems, which could have led to Honda’s decision of early up-gradation.

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