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McLaren Aim to Win “Race of Upgrades” in 2024

It becomes a race of upgrades and one step of upgrades won’t be enough, because [Ferrari] will also upgrade," team principal, Andrea Stella, said....

One of the highlights of the 2023 season was McLaren’s shocking upgrades midway through that saw them taking home nine podiums. McLaren haven’t kept as strong an advantage this year, but that’s likely due to Ferrari’s improved 2024 package. McLaren finished fourth in last year’s Constructors’ and are aiming for third in 2024. To do that, they are hoping to outdevelop their rivals.

Ferrari might be a step ahead at the moment, but McLaren have pulled ahead of Mercedes who continue their downward spiral. No team will be idle trying to improve their car meaning that if McLaren want to catch Ferrari and stay ahead of Mercedes, they will need an upgrade not dissimilar in magnitude to what was seen in 2023.

When asked if the team’s developments will be enough to catch Ferrari, team principal, Andrea Stella told the media that, “It becomes a race of upgrades and one step of upgrades won’t be enough, because [Ferrari] will also upgrade.

“But last year we were able to outdevelop our competitors, in a season we brought more laptime than competitors. So for us, this remains the objective.

“As long as we see that what we plan to bring trackside actually materialises, then we are happy because we know that we are in our trajectory, which we think is a strong trajectory.”

McLaren’s goals for this season are simple, according to Stella – establish McLaren as the third fastest car. Anything better than that is a bonus.

“I think looking at the facts, looking at the numbers, if we could retain third position in the championship, just establishing McLaren as the third best car, that will be a strong result for the team,” Stella continued. 

“At the same time, there are some circuits in which we look like we can compete with Ferrari. So then we say: ‘Why not?’

“But in fairness, in Formula 1, it’s not about wishing to ‘I would like [to be in such position], you just push as hard as possible.

“You just try to develop your car as much as possible, maximise the race weekends as much as possible and then you try and see at the end where you are.”

Stella concluded that there will be updates to the car introduced in Miami.

“After Miami, when we introduce some developments, we will have further information to see what we can compete for.”

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