Although Honda are at their home Grand Prix this weekend, Jenson Button is under no illusions as to what sort of result the team are expecting. The Japanese team are introducing several updates to their car for the race however the team are working towards understanding the car better rather than making it faster.
The team tested the new parts at Jerez last week and Button was pleased with how it went. “It was a good test in terms of information,” Button explained. “We tried new bargeboards, upper front wing. It didn’t make the car go quicker but we already knew that – it was to understand what was happening with the car under braking.
“You get a better feel but round Jerez it doesn’t really work because all you need there is downforce. But it was useful for the aero guys in a way it was a positive test, just not for this year. The last three races have nothing to do with this year really. We made some changes before to the suspension to help but everyone’s been making steps forward. And we haven’t really made a big step forwards. In Monza, the car was working reasonably well.
“The last race was pretty tough we weren’t working at that intermediate aero level. We seem to work well on low downforce medium downforce doesn’t seem to work so well for us. I don’t know what will happen here. The team are excited but to get a point here is going to be very tough,”
Meanwhile, Toyota are also racing at their home Grand Prix and having set up a special working group to prepare for the race, they are hoping for a good result. Thus far, Toyota have had a disappointing season, managing just 12 points in 14 races and their best finish being sixth place.
Technical boss Pascal Vasselon has revealed how important the home race it to the team and why they felt the need to setup a special working group.
“Yes, we have made sure that we were able to bring the best possible preparation so we did a special project for this race,” Vasselon explained. “In fact, we have put together everything we do for a normal race but with a bit more anticipation and a bit more work on the aero side. We have concentrated our end-of-season package on Fuji.
“Initially, the package was quite big but we were able to bring some of those parts to the track earlier than anticipated. We had part of it in Turkey and Spa – what is totally new here is the floor, the turning vanes, a test with a new rear wing on Friday too. We really try our best here. We do it at every race but we try and do a little more here for obvious reasons,”