It was yet another disappointment for McLaren as it returned empty handed from Italian Grand Prix at Monza with Fernando Alonso retiring for the second consecutive race after summer break.
The Spaniard started from 13th after a scuffle with Haas’ Kevin Magnussen on Saturday – with the starting position termed as a miracle considering the pace of the car. He made up few places at the start on Sunday at Monza, running 10th.
But just after he was overtaken by Racing Point Force India’s Sergio Perez on Lap 7 for the points position, he dived into the pits a lap later to retire the car with a radio call of an issue he was facing from Turn 7 to Turn 9.
Post race, the two-time champion revealed of an electrical issue with the engine misfiring in those corners from the start of the race itself. “We had some electrical issues, something on the engine as the car was misfiring on corner seven and eight.
“We could not solve the problem [in those laps] and then the car eventually switched off. I then arrived rolling in the pitlane. It was tough, we were running in the points as well, so it is double pain.
“This weekend we performed much better than we expected and I think we had the possibility to take some points today, so it’s a shame that we had to retire so early in the race,” said Alonso.
“Also, we were planning to change the engine at Spa or here and get a penalty at a track we knew was going to be difficult for us in terms of performance, but surprisingly we were good, so we chose not to take it here.”
Teammate Stoffel Vandoorne finished 13th in a better show but the Belgian was never in the position to score points. However, he was still able to beat some of the quicker names around him in a positive outing.
“Our race pace was pretty good. We were stuck behind a Sauber, the Toro Rosso of Pierre [Gasly] and the Renault of Nico [Hulkenberg] but with our strategy we managed to undercut them and make it work,” he said.
With the team not scoring any points, the gap to Haas and Renault has increased to 32 while with Force India scoring 10 more points, the Silverstone-based team has closed down the gap to McLaren to just 24 in the two races.