The narrative is almost irresistible. A once-great team, McLaren, ditches troublesome engine partner Honda and then struggles again pre-season with Renault propulsion while Toro Rosso thrives with Japanese power.
And when the McLaren causes two red flags on the opening day of the second test and has another problem in the pitlane, all a week after Fernando Alonso's car became a candidate to be used as a metaphor by shedding a wheel on the first day of running, on top of visible adaptations being made to the bodywork because of cooling problems, it's too easy to open the laptop and churn out explanations of why the team is in crisis.
But things are nowhere near that bad. Yes, McLaren has had problems. Yes, it hasn't shown a turn of speed capable of taking the fight to a Red Bull team that, thanks to their shared engine supplier, is its natural benchmark. But the mood in the team is still positive and the car, when moving, is working pretty well - and it passes the 'eye test' as well from trackside.