Fernando Alonso takes swipe at Honda after dismal practice day in Barcelona

McLaren executive director Zak Brown said his team felt "disbelief" when Fernando Alonso suffered his engine failure on his first lap of Formula 1 practice at the Spanish Grand Prix.

"I am more or less confident".

Alonso's MCL32 vehicle broke down at just the second corner.

Alonso is out of contract at the end of this season and has said he wants to stay in F1 if he can find a vehicle that will allow him to fight at the front.

"I did not want to spend the morning on the couch watching TV".

Bizarrely, that McLaren F1 vehicle held it together long enough to make into the final Qualifying 3 session and nab a seventh place start.

"It's a track that is very hard to follow on, so if we do a good start and keep this position the points are a real possibility", said Alonso, who conceded that the extended DRS zone for this weekend could work against him due to his power disadvantage.

"It was my decision", Alonso said. He didn't finish any of the four races, and hit a new low at the Russian GP when his McLaren broke down on the formation lap.

But, incredibly, the 35-year-old Spaniard dragged his McLaren not only into the final phase of qualifying - a first for the British team this season - but then to seventh on the grid for Sunday's grand prix in front of his home fans, too.

Alonso will miss the Monaco Grand Prix in a fortnight's time as he heads to the United States for the Indianapolis 500.

As for the rest of practice, Lewis Hamilton was 0.029 seconds quicker than his Mercedes team-mate Valtteri Bottas in Barcelona.

"What is clear is that we all need a joy, a result, something, since there is a minimal possibility of winning something here. This will be an important race, and people are starting to bring couple more bits", he said breezily.

"I think he will sit down some time in the summer and think 'Do they really have a path to give me a winning vehicle in 2018?'"

Red Bull driver Max Verstappen, who won the race previous year, and Daniel Ricciardo were next, within 1.6 seconds of Hamilton.

In FP2, the wind picked up and caused plenty of wobbly moments out on track, with Vettel and Verstappen going through the gravel.

Practice will resume after lunch and again on Saturday before qualifying for Sunday's race.

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