McLaren: Spain upgrade has to deliver after slow start to F1 season

McLaren admits that its Spanish Grand Prix update package "has to deliver" after Jenson Button had to use an alternative strategy to finish fifth in China last weekend

McLaren: Spain upgrade has to deliver after slow start to F1 season

Despite having made progress from its troubled start to the campaign, the Woking-based outfit is resigned to waiting until its revamped car arrives to see if it can rescue its title hopes.

And although Jenson Button led the race in China thanks to his two-stop strategy, team principal Martin Whitmarsh knows that doing that is not good enough.

"I would like to be leading it when the chequered flag comes out," he said, after seeing Button eventually come home in fifth place.

"I am not delighted. I cannot be delighted. To be honest, I am disappointed about it.

"An enormous amount of work went into some modifications which were a bit on the fly, a bit of a try here, and I think we made a bit of progress but not as much as I would like.

"So overall I am a bit disappointed but we now have to make sure that the big package coming for Spain delivers."

When asked by AUTOSPORT if it was essential McLaren's Spanish GP updates produced a big step forward if the team was to remain in the title hunt, Whitmarsh said: "It has to deliver something."

Button himself says there are tangible signs that McLaren is making progress, as he felt it vital the team did not let its motivation slip.

"We are still a long way behind the lead guys but there is progress, from the first race to now," he said.

"The first race was 1.5 seconds [off pole position], the last race was nine tenths and here we were seven tenths in Q2, so it is definitely improving.

"We were two tenths off a Red Bull in Q2, so there is definitely progress.

"It is tough being where we are, but we need to be positive that we are moving forward."

shares
comments
Bahrain GP: Force India, Sauber insist no concerns about safety
Previous article

Bahrain GP: Force India, Sauber insist no concerns about safety

Next article

Sauber not expecting quick turnaround after slow start to F1 season

Sauber not expecting quick turnaround after slow start to F1 season
Why F1's nearly man is refreshed and ready for his return Plus

Why F1's nearly man is refreshed and ready for his return

He has more starts without a podium than anyone else in Formula 1 world championship history, but Nico Hulkenberg is back for one more shot with Haas. After spending three years on the sidelines, the revitalised German is aiming to prove to his new team what the F1 grid has been missing

The potential-laden F1 car that Ferrari neglected Plus

The potential-laden F1 car that Ferrari neglected

The late Mauro Forghieri played a key role in Ferrari’s mid-1960s turnaround, says STUART CODLING, and his pretty, intricate 1512 was among the most evocative cars of the 1.5-litre era. But a victim of priorities as Formula 1 was deemed less lucrative than success in sportscars, its true potential was never seen in period

Formula 1
Jan 28, 2023
Why Vasseur relishes 'feeling the pressure' as Ferrari's F1 boss Plus

Why Vasseur relishes 'feeling the pressure' as Ferrari's F1 boss

OPINION: Fred Vasseur has spent only a few weeks as team principal for the Ferrari Formula 1 team, but is already intent on taking the Scuderia back to the very top. And despite it being arguably the most demanding job in motorsport, the Frenchman is relishing the challenge

Formula 1
Jan 27, 2023
The crucial tech changes F1 teams must adapt to in 2023 Plus

The crucial tech changes F1 teams must adapt to in 2023

Changes to the regulations for season two of Formula 1's ground-effects era aim to smooth out last year’s troubles and shut down loopholes. But what areas have been targeted, and what impact will this have?

Formula 1
Jan 26, 2023
Are these the 50 quickest drivers in F1 history? Plus

Are these the 50 quickest drivers in F1 history?

Who are the quickest drivers in Formula 1 history? LUKE SMITH asked a jury of experienced and international panel of experts and F1 insiders. Some of them have worked closely with F1’s fastest-ever drivers – so who better to vote on our all-time top 50? We’re talking all-out speed here rather than size of trophy cabinet, so the results may surprise you…

Formula 1
Jan 25, 2023
One easy way the FIA could instantly improve F1 Plus

One easy way the FIA could instantly improve F1

OPINION: During what is traditionally a very quiet time of year in the Formula 1 news cycle, FIA president Mohammed Ben Sulayem has been generating headlines. He’s been commenting on massive topics in a championship that loves them, but also addressing necessary smaller changes too. Here we suggest a further refinement that would be a big boon to fans

Formula 1
Jan 24, 2023
How can McLaren keep hold of Norris? Plus

How can McLaren keep hold of Norris?

Lando Norris is no longer the young cheeky-chappy at McLaren; he’s now the established ace. And F1's big guns will come calling if the team can’t give him a competitive car. Here's what the team needs to do to retain its prize asset

Formula 1
Jan 24, 2023
What difference did F1's fastest pitstops of 2022 make? Plus

What difference did F1's fastest pitstops of 2022 make?

While a quick pitstop can make all the difference to the outcome of a Formula 1 race, most team managers say consistency is more important than pure speed. MATT KEW analyses the fastest pitstops from last season to see which ones – if any – made a genuine impact

Formula 1
Jan 23, 2023