McLaren confirm more upgrades for upcoming rounds

McLaren are working to build upon the MCL38’s strong baseline with consistent upgrades in the upcoming rounds.

Nobody has scored more points than McLaren in the last three rounds. Lando Norris and Oscar Piastri regularly optimise the MCL38’s potential, which is capable of race victories at various circuit configurations. They are even competitive at low-speed circuits like Canada, traditionally a bogey track for the team. For the foreseeable future, McLaren will be contenders at the very front.

F1’s development is more intense than ever. The budget cap penalises teams who take the wrong direction with their upgrades, as evidenced most dramatically by Aston Martin.

However, modern Formula 1 also rewards efficiency. McLaren has succeeded in this area better than anyone else, finding consistent performance in the simulator. Moreover, the wind tunnel in Woking correlates very accurately with the actual performance shown on the track.

This is partly why the upgrades introduced to the MCL38 have worked repeatedly. It also gives the team led by Andrea Stella confidence in their ability to maintain this trajectory.

McLaren reveals next sequence of upgrades

After another strong weekend in Canada, the McLaren team principal revealed there are more upgrades on the way:

“We will bring some upgrades for the upcoming races,” Motorsport Total quotes him as saying.

“But it will not be a single big upgrade like we have seen in the past twelve months. It will be more about a few individual components.”

Lando Norris, McLaren MCL38

It is normal for McLaren to underplay the potential of their upgrades. With the team’s first 2023 update package, Andrea Stella set the rather unambitious target of overtaking Alpine. Of course, these improvements – first brought to Austria – ended up catapulting the team to the front of the field.

The Italian engineer also kept a low profile in the build-up to the first MCL38 upgrades in Miami. As evidenced by their results since the Grand Prix in Florida, these changes were certainly more impactful than advertised.

With such fine margins determining victory and defeat at the front, incremental gains will make the difference. Therefore, even small changes can yield big results for McLaren.

Considering that Red Bull’s upgrades have not produced the desired performance, there is an opportunity for McLaren to apply more pressure on the reigning World Champions.

Another piece of good news for McLaren, as outlined above, is they no longer have any major vulnerability. This means they can focus on chasing pure downforce – rather than trying to rectify specific areas.

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