McLaren has more upgrades scheduled for the Singapore GP as Andrea Stella looks to rectify the MCL60’s weaknesses. Last weekend demonstrated that McLaren still has “strong” and “weak circuits”, which cannot continue if Red Bull is to be toppled.
The Woking-based team started the 2023 season poorly, missing development targets over winter.
However, a massive package of improvements (starting in Austria) has transformed the papaya outfit into a front-running team. McLaren’s trajectory hasn’t been completely smooth, but fluctuations are expected after making such big changes.
Looking ahead, Andrea Stella’s personnel are tasked with quickly understanding the MCL60 and its new parts. Next season’s cars will be an evolution from 2023, so the next nine rounds – regardless of update plans – are critical.
Red Bull (with their established philosophy) doesn’t have these loose ends, but the resurgent McLaren still has work to do in understanding their package.
With this in mind, Andrea Stella confirms that new innovations will debut in Singapore:
“We have a deficit at high speeds, [and] we are already working to resolve it as much as possible on this car – and then eliminate it on the next one.
“We want to push towards Singapore, where we will bring some new parts.”
The streets of Marina Bay should be kinder to McLaren due to the circuit’s more favourable characteristics. Ferrari’s SF-23 could struggle significantly at this venue, although Aston Martin and Mercedes should be competitive.
Therefore, the British outfit must optimise its package to secure a good result in Singapore. Additionally, since this will be the case until the end of 2023, collecting data and correlating wind tunnel simulations are essential.
Aston Martin, Ferrari, and Mercedes have all fallen victim to misleading simulator data in the last eighteen months. Formula 1’s current generation of cars are highly sensitive and can easily lose their operating window.
This danger will incentivise McLaren to ensure they can confidently pursue their development direction over the winter break.
Author: Jaden Diaz-Ndisang