F1: Alonso Set for Return to McLaren-Honda in Malaysian Grand Prix

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WOKING, England — official team release — Mark Thompson/Getty Images Europe photo —

McLaren-Honda announced on Monday that, subject to a successful final FIA medical assessment on Thursday at the Sepang International Circuit, Fernando Alonso will return to the cockpit of the MP4-30 for this weekend’s Malaysian Grand Prix.

“Since his Barcelona testing accident, Fernando has followed a rigorous, specialised training programme, designed and closely monitored by leading sports scientists, to ensure his safe and timely return to racing,” the team said in a statement. “At the McLaren Technology Center last week, Fernando met with his engineers and drove the simulator [in order to] to bring him up to date with the latest developments on the MP4-30 chassis and power unit. As part of that process he spent time with senior engineers, discussing the accident and reviewing the comprehensive data and analysis, all of which has been shared with the FIA.”

The team said that while there was nothing evident in the telemetry data they received and nothing abnormal in reconstructions and laboratory tests, Alonso recalled a sense of ‘heavy’ steering prior to the accident — leading the team to fit an additional sensor to the car to increase the amount of data captured.

McLaren had a long opening weekend in Melbourne. After qualifying on the back row of the grid, the team lost sub Kevin Magnussen on the way to the grid due to issues with the car’s power unit. Jenson Button finished the grand prix as the last car running in 11th, two laps in arrears to eventual winner Lewis Hamilton.

CREDIT: McLaren-Honda

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