Honda hoping for change of fortune in Turkey

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After the disappointment of Hungary, Honda are looking to bounce back in this weekend’s Turkish Grand Prix. Despite no track testing since the last round, their RA107 machine has undergone an intensive programme of factory-based development.

As a result, the Japanese team head to Istanbul with some much-needed improvements which they hope will ensure they avoid a repeat of their Hungaroring outing, where Jenson Button retired and Rubens Barrichello finished 18th and last.

"We have been working very hard at the factory during the three-week break since the Hungarian Grand Prix to analyse the problems that we experienced in that race and to continue developing the car,” said senior technical director, Shuhei Nakamoto.

“Everyone at the team was very disappointed with our performance at the Hungaroring and although we recognise the RA107 particularly struggled at this type of high downforce circuit, we are making all possible efforts to improve our current situation. The next race in Turkey is a circuit which should be more suited to our car and we expect to be able to fight more effectively in the midfield."

The Honda drivers, meanwhile, have been taking advantage of the August break to have some well-deserved relaxation time, whilst continuing their training in preparation for what is always a challenging race in Turkey’s very hot conditions.

Button finished fourth at Istanbul Park last year and fifth in 2005, and although the Briton knows he is unlikely to repeat that form this season, he is looking forward to returning to the Herman Tilke-designed circuit.

“I have had a couple of great races here in the last two years to finish in the top six, and whilst our performance isn't quite there this year, I am expecting an improvement from the last race," he said

Barrichello echoed Button’s optimism: “I am confident that we will have a better race weekend in Turkey. The break has been good to recharge and get ready for the final stage of the season but I know that work has been continuing at the factory to push the development of the car.”

Honda brought both cars home in the points in Turkey last year, with Barrichello’s eighth place complimenting Button’s fourth.