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McLaren's Stellar Start and Balancing Act for 2025

McLaren’s Stellar Start & Balancing Act for 2025

16/03/2024

McLaren F1 shines in Jeddah, securing third in Constructors’ despite balancing concerns. A hopeful leap towards 2025 competitiveness underlines their journey.

With the 16 points scored by Oscar Piastri and Lando Norris in Jeddah, McLaren F1 temporarily holds third place in the Constructors’ World Championship, just ahead of Mercedes. This marks a significant departure from last year’s performance, where the Woking-based team failed to score any points at the same circuit.

However, despite a much more successful start to the season, Team Principal Andrea Stella identifies ongoing concerns with the MCL38, particularly regarding its balance. He believes solutions may not fully materialize until 2025.

“We have yet to address certain specific aspects of the car’s balance, but I believe once we do, we’ll make a significant leap in terms of competitiveness. This will mitigate some weaknesses, yet there’s still considerable work ahead.”

“We have two more years under these regulations, and I think it will take us at least another year to rectify these balance issues. I’m hopeful this will make us highly competitive in 2025.”

“More broadly, this exercise is crucial for understanding, from a methodological standpoint, how you develop strategies and, in terms of objectives, what you need to do to prevent these types of problems or weaknesses in 2026 as well.”

“This is thus a very beneficial endeavor currently underway at McLaren. I see it as both a short and long-term investment.”

F1 must also improve regarding its 2026 regulations

While Stella highlights the ongoing work at McLaren, he also urges Formula 1 to learn from the current regulatory era to ensure an even better spectacle from 2026, aiming to avoid any undesirable side effects.

“From a technical and engineering viewpoint, the 2022 regulations presented some unexpected challenges. We’ve made significant strides in understanding these challenges.”

“This is also why these cars are much more comfortable to drive today, though they can still be quite delicate. They tend to bounce a bit, exhibit some flex, and the cars can become quite twitchy. Comfort is crucial, but so is the ability to push the car to its limits.”

“However, all these insights should definitely be incorporated into the design of the 2026 regulations, especially if they derive from the ground effect cars we’re currently using.”

“It will be a drawback if, in 2026, cars face similar issues to those of the 2022 generation. Or if we encounter new unintended problems, as we still have time to study and must start off on the right foot in 2026, given the difficulties experienced in 2022.”

“It was sometimes uncomfortable for the drivers, even extreme, and occasionally dangerous because the cars became quite unstable. Clearly, we must strive to be in better shape, and we have the necessary tools to achieve this.”

McLaren’s Stellar Start and Balancing Act for 2025. McLaren’s Stellar Start and Balancing Act for 2025

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