Alonso suffers spectacular Honda failure on FP1 out-lap
Honda's hopes of progress in Formula 1 suffered a fresh setback in practice for the Spanish Grand Prix on Friday when Fernando Alonso's car stopped on an out-lap with a spectacular engine failure.
The Spaniard had only got as far as the exit of Turn 3 after leaving the pits before his car snapped sideways with the rear wheels locked – as smoke poured out of the rear.
Once his McLaren had stopped on track, fluid was seen pouring out of the bottom of the power unit.
The power unit was one that had been used in the Australian, Chinese Grands Prix, as well as Bahrain practice, so it means that he will not get a penalty for an engine change that will now be needed.
However, depending on which parts are damaged, he could move on to his fourth and final ICE and MGU-K.
A new power unit will also result in his third internal combustion engine and MGU-H.
Alonso was seen leaving the circuit soon after the failure.
Honda said an oil leak was the cause of the failure, and that the issue was under investigation.
The power unit is being changed and the team expects Alonso to return to action in FP2.
The energy store, the control electronics and the combustion engine will remain unchanged.
Just a fortnight on from him failing to make the start of the Russian Grand Prix, Alonso had come into his home race demanding an immediate step forward with Honda's reliability.
"We need to raise our game and hopefully finish with both cars this race and accumulate some mileage," he explained.
"Some things that we need to put in place, starting this weekend, for the rest of the season. So hopefully this is the starting point of a new championship for us."
When asked about his reaction to what happened in Russia, Alonso said: "Well, actually I still don't know what happened exactly in Sochi. We had problems with the ERS on the formation laps.
"I tried to restart the whole thing during the formation lap a couple of times, but on the last attempt the car didn't start.
"Yeah, really, really bad for us, and as a team not being able to start the race with Stoffel's car in Bahrain, with my side of the garage in Russia, so completely unacceptable and we need to, as I said, raise our game here in terms of reliability and hopefully finish with both cars."
Live: Follow Spanish GP practice as it happens
Spanish GP: Hamilton leads Mercedes 1-2 in FP1
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|Location||Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya|
|Drivers||Fernando Alonso Shop Now|
|Teams||McLaren Shop Now|