Andreas Seidl the McLaren team Principal has revealed that McLaren has been able to hide its deficit to the other teams only during the Qualifying sessions as on race day they have developed the habit of slipping down in the pecking order.
The papaya-colored team’s star has been shining brightly in the sport in recent years as they were able to finish in P3 in the Constructors standings in 2020 and last year were also able to register their first race win since 2012 in the sport.
However, despite the improvements that the team has made, this year McLaren is struggling immensely in race pace, and because of the recurring issue, are now in the fifth position after conceding fourth place to the ever-improving Alpine F1 team.
Lando Norris has been able to perform well during Qualifying and has managed to get his MCL36 up at the front end with the lights of Mercedes, Ferrari, and, Red Bull, however, all his effort goes into the drain during races.
Andreas Seidl while dwelling over the issue has said, “In general, if you compare our competitiveness in quali to in the race, I guess in quali, the deficits our car still has in the end to these top three cars on the downforce side, can mask quite a lot with the grip that the tires have on one lap in qualifying.”
“But over a race distance, the lack of performance or downforce is eating into the tires and I guess that is why you then see the bigger spread again or the gap over the distance.”
Andreas Seidl believes that McLaren’s upgrades are helping them in closing the gap with the teams ahead of them
The 2022 F1 season has seen the dawn of a new era in the sport where budget caps have become a thing and teams are now expected to operate within the budget cap for the whole season.
This has put a limit on the number of upgrades that the teams can bring in a season and the gaps between the upgrades have become wider. Moreover, teams are focusing more on bringing significant upgrades rather than continuously tinkering with minute things.
Seidl has further added, “In terms of race pace, I guess, compared to Alpine, for example, we were in a good position in Hungary, and definitely in a better position compared to in France.”
“So I think thanks to the upgrade that we brought to France we further optimized this time out in terms of usage.”
“Thanks to the work the team put in in terms of learning from what we had seen in Paul Ricard, I guess we made a good step forward and it is simply important to keep going and keep improving the car because when you see the lap time difference which is still there also in qualifying, it is clear that they have a much stronger car.”
The McLaren F1 team has got its sights set on the fourth position in the Constructors Championship and it seems that they are going to do everything in their power to get ahead of Alpine in the remaining races of the season.
Alpine has the better overall package and considering the way the Enstone-based team has improved race after race, it is not going to be a walk in the park for McLaren.
The final leg of the 2022 season is going to be an enticing battle between McLaren and Alpine and fans can expect fireworks when the two teams will go up against each other starting from the Belgian Grand Prix onwards.