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McLaren Urged to See Beyond Defeats by Stella

Stella to McLaren: Focus on Positives, Not Losses

09/07/2024

McLaren F1’s Andrea Stella encourages the team to focus on the positives amid recent defeats, stressing resilience.

Lando Norris was unsparing in his words towards himself and his team after a series of mistakes at the British Grand Prix. The McLaren F1 driver is frustrated over missed victories following erroneous strategic decisions in recent races and on-track errors costing victories.

Andrea Stella, the team director, adopts a more measured approach, not wanting errors to overshadow McLaren’s performances. According to the Italian, it’s a positive sign that finishing third and fourth is now disappointing for the Woking team.

“Near misses are essentially good news, right?” Stella said. “We hadn’t seen such incidents 12 months ago, so we need to first see the positives. It shows the team is in a position to be frustrated because we are third on the podium and the other driver fourth.”

“And once again, we are the team that scored the most points, right? So, if we don’t start from a positive, constructive side, we will be those who build and destroy, and we will always stay at the same level. So, it’s everyone’s responsibility.”

“We need to be ready” for next time

Stella sees these defeats as learning opportunities for a team in rebuilding mode, battling against championship-winning structures. However, he wants McLaren to be ready to seize the next opportunities that arise.

“If Lando and Oscar aren’t to blame for some missed opportunities, we all, including the drivers, have the responsibility to keep building. And when you have days where you miss an opportunity, it’s the best chance to continue building.”

“We race against teams that have won championships and are quite stable in terms of personnel, so they are familiar with this kind of top-level racing in changing conditions, and so on.”

“From this perspective, I think we are more of a construction site. And we take these near misses. The frustration quickly fades. But the opportunity will soon present itself. So, we must be ready.”

Stella believes McLaren must understand how the errors were made, identify where the flaw in the decision chain is, and rectify it: “You review your decisions and see how they were made.”

“You see what information we brought to the table. Was this information used in the best possible way or not? What were the contributions of the different people? That’s how you manage complex processes.”

“And when I say complex, it’s not just because it’s a difficult decision, but also because it involves many people. And you have to ensure that when you debrief, it’s a good learning experience for everyone involved. So, we examine, we learn, and we restart.”

McLaren makes “good use” of its MCL38

Finally, he refuses to succumb to the analysis that McLaren is misusing an MCL38 that could be the best car on the grid: “People say McLaren has the best car, but I think we make good use of it.”

“I would like to highlight the good work of the people who prepare the car. We arrive at practice sessions, and the car performs well. And we continue to do well throughout the weekend.”

“But we saw at the British GP that it’s not necessarily because we have the fastest car. Indeed, in the first stint, where things were quite regular, the Mercedes started rolling!”

“That’s one of the positives. I think the team is working very well, and when you’re fighting for the top spots, it becomes much more visible when you still have work to do.”

McLaren Urged to See Beyond Defeats by Stella

McLaren Urged to See Beyond Defeats by Stella McLaren Urged to See Beyond Defeats by Stella

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