McLaren pledges to get back on track

Following its nightmare Spanish Grand Prix, where both cars failed to make it successfully around the first corner, world championship leader Team McLaren Mercedes has vowed to get back on the title trail in Austria this weekend

McLaren pledges to get back on track

Main rivals Ferrari carved into McLaren's constructors' championship points advantage in Spain, and are now just three points behind. McLaren's managing director Martin Whitmarsh says this weekend's race at the A1-Ring is crucial to the 2003 season, and he is buoyed by the team's history at the circuit.

"It was a disappointing weekend for Team McLaren Mercedes at the Spanish Grand Prix, but although we did not score any points, we remain in strong positions in both championships and there is still a long way to go this season," said Whitmarsh. "Consistency is key in all aspects of the team and we are working hard to achieve this across the board. F1 returned to Austria in 1997, and since then Team McLaren Mercedes has taken 50 percent of the victories, and has not finished out of the top six, a trend we are looking to continue this year."

Driver Kimi Raikkonen's amazing run of early season form of four podium finishes came to an abrupt halt in Barcelona, where he started last on the grid and crashed into the back of Antonio Pizzonia's Jaguar at the start. Despite that he continues to lead the world championship by four points from Ferrari's Michael Schumacher.

"The last Grand Prix in Spain was obviously difficult for me and the team," said Raikkonen, "But that is racing and I am now looking forward to the Austrian race and hopefully scoring some points towards my championship tally."

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