McLaren "anticipating a good F1 car" in 2019

McLaren is "anticipating a good car" for the 2019 Formula 1 season as it bids to improve swiftly under its new management structure.

McLaren "anticipating a good F1 car" in 2019

The British team is the second most successful in F1's history but has not won since the 2012 season finale or stood on the podium since the 2014 season opener.

It expected to challenge for podiums following its switch to Renault engines last year, after three years of pain with Honda, but the performance of its MCL33 was disappointing.

Since racing chief Eric Boullier left at the start of last summer, McLaren has made a number of major changes – culminating last week in ex-Porsche LMP1 boss Andreas Seidl joining as managing director.

Speaking at last weekend's Autosport International Show, McLaren CEO Zak Brown said 2019 would be "a very big year for us".

"We're anticipating a good car," said Brown. "The off-season development has gone according to plan but you ultimately don't know what the competition's been up to and the competition's tough, and getting tougher.

"We need good feedback from [new drivers Carlos Sainz and Lando Norris]. This will be a much different car to 2018.

"We want them to race the field hard. Naturally team-mates race each other hard but they get along well, they are good guys and to move forward as a team we need them to bring both cars back in the points.

"They know that. That's the team goal."

McLaren says it understands the errors that led to its MCL33's fundamental aerodynamic shortcoming in 2018.

Two-time world champion Fernando Alonso, who has stepped away from F1 for 2019, scored a best finish of fifth in the season opener but McLaren finished in the points just twice in the nine races after the summer break.

Brown added: "All the men and women back at McLaren having been working extremely hard to make sure we build a better car than 2018, because I know these guys won't want to drive last year's car!"

Former Red Bull protege Sainz, who joins McLaren from Renault, has already said he hopes the Woking team "remembers" how to win.

Speaking at the Autosport International Show, he reiterated that patience was needed given how far McLaren had fallen back.

"McLaren has a very clear plan, which is hopefully in the near future to go back to what McLaren has always been: a winning team," he said.

"But it's a long-term plan. We cannot get overexcited. We need to work hard. The team last year was really far away from that.

"We've seen what we need to do to become bigger and stronger."

shares
comments
F1 created own sim to trial new grid formations

Previous article

F1 created own sim to trial new grid formations

Next article

The F1 TV challenge that cannot afford to fail again

The F1 TV challenge that cannot afford to fail again
Load comments

About this article

Series Formula 1
Teams McLaren
Author Scott Mitchell
The Barcelona practice times that prove Red Bull has hidden pace Prime

The Barcelona practice times that prove Red Bull has hidden pace

Lewis Hamilton led the way in Friday practice for the 2021 Spanish Grand Prix, but there was one major encouraging sign for Red Bull. However, making good on that gain will require Max Verstappen to avoid repeating a mistake that left him well down the FP2 order...

Formula 1
May 7, 2021
Why McLaren doesn’t doubt Ricciardo can escape his ‘dark’ place Prime

Why McLaren doesn’t doubt Ricciardo can escape his ‘dark’ place

Three points finishes from as many starts represents a decent opening innings on paper, but Daniel Ricciardo has endured a tough start to his McLaren career - only magnified his teammate's excellent form. Yet both he and the team have good reason to expect a turnaround soon.

Formula 1
May 6, 2021
What needs to “change” for Red Bull is ending Verstappen’s errors Prime

What needs to “change” for Red Bull is ending Verstappen’s errors

OPINION: Going up against the dominant force of Mercedes and Lewis Hamilton was always going to demand the best from Red Bull and Max Verstappen. But after making a couple more errors during the Portuguese Grand Prix, the Dutch driver showed there's a small gap he still needs to close in the 2021 Formula 1 title fight.

Formula 1
May 5, 2021
The "subtle" Red Bull upgrades that kept it in the Portugal F1 mix Prime

The "subtle" Red Bull upgrades that kept it in the Portugal F1 mix

Red Bull's Portuguese Grand Prix fortunes were decidedly second best to Mercedes', but the result skews the potential that the team had at Portimao. With a new set of updates, the team looks good going forward into the rest of 2021's spicy F1 competition

Formula 1
May 3, 2021
Portuguese Grand Prix driver ratings Prime

Portuguese Grand Prix driver ratings

The 2021 Portuguese GP will for several drivers go down as a weekend of missed opportunities amid imperfect track conditions that caused struggles with tyre warm-up. But the performances of a select few stood out from the crowd

Formula 1
May 3, 2021
The five key tests Hamilton passed to claim Portugal victory Prime

The five key tests Hamilton passed to claim Portugal victory

Just as he did in 2020, Lewis Hamilton had to come from behind to win the 2021 Portuguese Grand Prix. Only this time there were two rivals he had to pass, among the several challenges he had to overcome, on his way to securing a 97th grand prix victory

Formula 1
May 3, 2021
The data that leaves both Red Bull, Mercedes uncertain of supremacy Prime

The data that leaves both Red Bull, Mercedes uncertain of supremacy

Lewis Hamilton topped the crucial FP2 session on Friday as F1 returned to Portugal, but his Mercedes team cannot be sure it has the edge on its Red Bull rivals. As cool temperatures and wind combine with the still-slippery surface to present drivers with quandaries over set-up and tyre warmup, there's still everything to play for come qualifying.

Formula 1
May 1, 2021
How in-form Norris is staking his claim as Britain's next F1 champion Prime

How in-form Norris is staking his claim as Britain's next F1 champion

As a highly-rated Mercedes junior, George Russell is naturally billed as Lewis Hamilton's heir apparent where Britain's next Formula 1 champion is concerned. But he may face competition for that accolade from Lando Norris, fresh from a confidence-boosting run to third at Imola whose rise is being accelerated by his McLaren team’s revival

Formula 1
Apr 29, 2021