Though he is one of the most successful drivers to have raced in Formula 1, Fernando Alonso was still keen to see some benefit from the landing an unwanted world-record at the Belgian Grand Prix – a cake to celebrate McLaren's 105 grid position penalties…
Both he and Jenson Button will start on the back row for the Spa-Francorchamps race as McLaren and Honda use the weekend to change a raft of power unit components – more than once and in one go – in an effort to avoid future penalties.
Taking advantage of a change in the regulations that mean starting at the back of the grid is the worst penalty you can suffer regardless of whether you have 20 dropped positions or – in McLaren's case – 105 in total, the changes are designed to give the team newer parts to use going forward without penalty.
Though not a record Alonso necessarily wants on his CV, he was at least seeing the lighter side of the farce, asking for a cake to mark the occasion.
“We should have a cake – it's a world record or something,” he joked after qualifying.
On a more serious note, Alonso admits the likelihood of adding more points to his tally come race day seem slim, saying he will need a 'very chaotic' race to take advantage.
“I talked before about the rain, but we probably need more than the rain. We need a very chaotic race, but I think the target cannot be the points to be honest. We have to be realistic, we are not competitive at all and the target is to learn about the car and keep putting on mileage.”