Formula 1

Important for McLaren to bounce back after difficult race weekend – Seidl

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McLaren Seidl Sunday
Fifth in the German GP for McLaren was its equal-best result since the start of the 2015 season. Credit: Octane Photographic Ltd.

McLaren F1 Team team principal Andreas Seidl praised the Formula 1 squad’s points scoring efforts in the German Grand Prix, “after a difficult race weekend compared to our main competitors.”

In a rain-hit event at the Hockenheimring, McLaren scored its equal-best result since the start of the 2015 season, as Carlos Sainz Jr recovered from an early spin to take fifth place, while Lando Norris retired with hydraulics failure just after making a pitstop.

The 10 points Sainz harvested for the fifth place in the grand prix boosted McLaren’s tally in 11 races to 70, already bettering the 62 the team hauled in the entire 2018 season, while Sainz cemented his place in seventh in the drivers’ championship, moving to just seven points behind Pierre Gasly.

In a further boost for the Woking outfit, main rivals, and engine supplier, Renault failed to score any points after Daniel Ricciardo retired with exhaust failure, while Nico Hulkenberg crashed at the final corner while in contention for a podium.

There was so much going on in the race that it’s actually difficult to recap everything that happened right now,” said Seidl. “It was great for us to score some more important points after a difficult race weekend compared to our main competitors. Carlos delivered a great drive, especially after his ‘off’ in the middle of the race, to battle through together with the engineering team and score this P5.”

Lando’s starting position was further compromised today when we needed to change the battery pack and MGU-K this morning. He made up places and actually ran ahead of Carlos after his spin, but unfortunately, Lando’s car lost all engine power in the middle of the race, which took away the possibility for him to have a similar race to Carlos and score more points.”

With McLaren’s MCL34 chassis known to be weak in lower-speed corners compared to its midfield rivals, the team faces a challenge at this weekend’s race at the Hungaroring to maintain its recent run of strong points haul, but Seidl is unfazed, insisting the team could continue to put points on the board.

“It was a challenging weekend, not only in terms of performance but also the working conditions – especially with the heat earlier in the weekend – were very tough. Next stop Hungary, where we aim to continue our progress,” he said.

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