RACING

The secret weapon McLaren should unleash next season

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McLaren boss Andreas Seidl has revealed his hopes new behind-the-scenes developments could benefit the team as early as next year.

After slipping from third to fourth in the Constructors’ Championship in 2021, the Woking-based team find themselves battling for P4 again in 2022, with their fight this season focused on Alpine.

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This comes despite the introduction of sweeping technical regulations for the current campaign.

In an exclusive interview with RacingNews365.comSeidl admits he wasn’t surprised to see the team’s place in the pecking order remain unchanged in light of the new rules.

Why the pecking order hasn’t changed drastically

“I didn’t expect a big change in the pecking order going into this new era of Formula 1,” Seidl said.

“Why? Because the teams that are just better right now, with their established organizations – with their established infrastructure, with their established tools that they use – there’s no reason why they shouldn’t make a better job than us. [in] preparing for this new era.

“And that’s what we see.”

Seidl also believes the budget cap has had an impact on the teams behind McLaren by allowing them to close the gap in midfield.

“We should also not forget that all the teams that we spent in the past – because we were the fourth largest team – are suddenly also in the middle of the fight,” continued the team leader.

“Some of these teams, like Alpine, like Alfa Romeo, have already put in place a state-of-the-art infrastructure.

“That’s why we have to accept that these guys can do as well as us, maybe even ahead of us right now, which is not a situation we’re happy with, but that’s the reality in which we are.”

How McLaren hopes to fight in the future

Despite this, Seidl is happy with the progress he’s seeing in the team and is confident that the right factors are in place for their future.

“In a year like this, I see that as a team we are taking steps forward [in a lot of different areas]“, he detailed.

“In the way we work together at home, how we work together between [races] and at home, in terms of productivity in terms of pit stops, for example.

“That’s the most important thing to me. [that] even in a difficult season like this, we continue to take steps as a team.

“Because that’s key for me, to be able in three years to be able to fight consistently for race wins again.”

New developments in place for 2023

As part of this, McLaren is developing a new wind tunnel and simulator, which Seidl hopes will soon benefit the British team.

“We plan to prepare the wind tunnel [by the] middle of next year, which means that part of the development of the ’24 car will already benefit from the new wind tunnel,” Seidl revealed.

“The first complete car that [will be] developed in the tunnel is the ’25 car. On the driving simulator side, we plan to complete a new one [at the] end of this year / beginning of next year, where we hope to see benefits already next year, or [at the] no later than ’24.”

Other developments are also in preparation.

“On CFDs [computational fluid dynamics]we also made great improvements,” added Seidl.

“We are also planning to update all of our production facilities, which must be done alongside [us] become better as a team.”

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