The reliability of the Renault engines seems to have plummeted since…well, since McLaren announced it was switching from Honda to Renault for 2018.
Mexico was a nightmare weekend for the Renault powered teams with Pierre Gasly missing most of practice, and then Daniel Ricciardo, Brendon Hartley, and Carlos Sainz all retiring from the race with engine issues.
Now things are getting even worse, as Hartley, Gasly, and Riccardo are all going to suffer this weekend too, thanks to 10-place grid drops for taking on a new MGU-H.
In fact, Toro Rosso’s weekend is sucking extra-hard at the moment as just a few minutes into FP1 Brendon Hartley ground to a halt with smoke billowing from the back of his car. That could mean even more penalties for the Kiwi, who’s used to hammering his Porsche 919 around for hours on end without issue. Welcome to F1, Brendon…
Shortly afterwards Gasly’s car developed an issue too, meaning he was stuck in the garage for most of the FP1.
At this point Toro Rosso will be counting down the days until it gets those Honda engines, whilst McLaren and Fernando Alonso are probably frantically flipping through the terms of the contract to see if there’s a way to backtrack on the Renault deal.