Alonso anticipates ‘difficult’ weekend for McLaren

Fernando Alonso has said he is braced for a “difficult” season opener in Australia after a torrid pre-season with McLaren-Honda.

The MCL32 required at least seven power unit changes throughout Winter Testing, suffered multiple breakdowns and managed just 11 laps on its longest stint.

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The expectation is that Alonso and team-mate Stoffel Vandoorne will both finish with DNFs at Albert Park, and the former appears to be prepared for the worst.

“After a difficult two weeks of testing we’re prepared to face a difficult weekend in Melbourne,” said Alonso ahead of Melbourne.

“We’ll do our best with what we have and there’s a lot of hard work and collaboration happening within the team, but the lack of time before the first race means you have fewer options for big changes.

“The first step will be to work on reliability before we can make any assumptions or predictions about performance, and we will try to enjoy the weekend as much as we can.”

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