Translation of the Q&A with Asaki from his press conference:
How do you rate the results of the Bahrain test, which ended in 1st and 2nd place on the final day?
It went fairly well. Like in previous years of experience, Mercedes is probably holding back. In that sense, I don't know what they are doing, so I don't know yet in comparison with the other manufacturers, but we can say that it was a very meaningful test for us because we were able to perform various tests as planned.
Earlier it was mentioned that Mercedes was playing the shamisen, but wasn't Honda playing the shamisen? (meaning sandbagging or difficult to read)
That's a secret (laughing)
There seems to be very high confidence in Tsunoda. He says he's aiming for a world champion, but how likely is he to be a champion this season?
Fast drivers have a different mentality than normal people so really don't know. However, based on what he's said and accomplished thus far, it seems that he is able to achieve results that I have not seen with Japanese F1 drivers so far, and I think that he has the ability. The teams that can win the series championship this season are Mercedes, Red Bull, not sure who's next (so it will be quite difficult). However, as drivers move between teams during the season, I don't know what will happen, but I'm hoping that he will eventually become the champion.
With the season being 23 races with an allowance of 3 PUs, it looks like some damage control will be required. How much percentage in performance reduction is necessary to assure 3 engines used for the season?
There are various types of damage control. If the reciprocating part, piston sleeve, etc. are damaged, the output may decrease. However, I am not so worried because it has improved since last season by adopting plating from Kumamoto Seisakusho.
Rather, the scary thing is if something causes it to break into pieces. If it is confirmed by a bench test etc., there may be a situation where you have to reduce it intentionally rather than when the horsepower decreases so that it does not reach that point. You may be able to fight your opponent on a case-by-case basis, by reducing some power, or put in a new one with a penalty. I think it depends on the situation.
Will Honda carry out future development by transferring power unit technology to Red Bull from next season?
It depends on the contract. Until now, it was Honda's power unit, so everything was controlled by Honda. It will be Red Bull's power unit from next year onwards, so they will decide what to do and what not to do. On top of that, if there is something you would like to ask Honda, we will do it on a contract basis. Specifically, even if it is frozen, if the regulation changes, it must be dealt with. Although it is before the contract, the development around that is starting, but in any case it depends on the contract.
Wouldn't lowering the position of the cam and widening the cylinder bank angle of the valve mean that the combustion chamber expands and it becomes difficult to burn?
The first purpose of changing that is power, so that's not the case. The design concept is to do things that are compatible, and if they are not compatible, take the horsepower.
Is it okay to understand that the combustion speed has been increased as a specific method of increasing horsepower?
There are many things that can be done, but as I said earlier, increasing the crankshaft output reduces the exhaust energy. Thus, make the combustion chamber the best shape while considering how to make it compatible. Therefore, if it is necessary to change the cylinder bank angle of the valve, the order is to change everything including the cam layout.
It was said by Yamamoto MD a lot of effort was put into the MGU-H because the exhaust temperature drops when the combustion efficiency is increased. What kind of approach did you take?
The MGU-H continues to work to improve the efficiency of turbines and compressors. It has been improved little by little. With that said, it is difficult to regain the amount of development that was lost last year, so there are more different ideas. That alone will not be enough to generate the power recovery that we were losing out last year, so we've implemented a lot more different ideas.
What was the approximate gap to the 2020 Mercedes PU?
There is no doubt that we were behind. We can't tell how much the difference is without looking at the other party's data, which only the FIA can do. We used calculations to predict it, but in reality the error margin is so large that we do not know exactly. However, it is the impression of the first race in Austria that there is no doubt that we were weaker.
Does that mean the gap in power was large?
There was a difference in power, and other factors were also large. In the final race, the car body side also improved considerably, and we won even though there was a power difference.
Last edited by ispano6 on Fri Mar 19, 2021 4:30 pm, edited 1 time in total.