McLaren and Honda to sever ties at the end of 2017 season

McLaren and Honda have announced they will sever ties at the end of the 2017 Formula 1 season. 

The partnership which was rekindled in 2015 after much success in the early 90s, has been somewhat turbulent as the pair battled to get to the front of the grid. 

McLaren signed two-time world champion Fernando Alonso off the back of the deal in 2014, however in the three years with the team he has only managed a best finishing position of 5th place at last year’s US Grand Prix.

This is further compounded by the fact that the team dropped four places in the constructors championship from when they ran Mercedes engines in 2014.

Honda developed its Power Unit prior to joining the grid in 2015, however they have since been unable to match the pace of Mercedes, Ferrari or Renault. 

Part of that has been down to the lack of teams running the Power Unit compared to other manufacturers. At least two other teams run Mercedes and Ferrari Power Unit’s on the grid, which gives them more data to work from when it installs upgrades. 

Honda by contrast have only ran with McLaren, which hindered their performance and ability to match their rivals. This has had a knock-on effect with McLaren’s sponsors, some of which have went over to Red Bull and Mercedes.

As a result, the team will be switching to Renault power, in a bid to regain the reputation on the grid as a front running team. 

Toro Rosso meanwhile will be switching to Honda power after announcing that they have come to a mutual agreement to terminate their deal with Renault.

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