Although Martin Whitmarsh believes McLaren do not have a "realistic shot at victory" in Canada, he is hoping for improvements at a circuit that suits the Woking team's cars.
McLaren head to the Circuit Gilles Villeneuve with 13 Canadian Grand Prix winner trophies on the mantel back in Woking. However, this season, those who bet on F1, reckons there's little chance of adding a 14th.
Jenson Button and Sergio Perez have struggled since the start of this season with only a few signs of improvement filtering in.
As such the team is down in sixth place in the Championship, seven points behind Force India.
"McLaren has always gone well in Canada - we've won 13 Canadian Grands Prix - and while we're not heading to Montreal next week with a realistic shot at victory, we well know that this is a race where an unexpected result is always possible," said Whitmarsh.
The team boss was full of praise for the grand prix, which he rates as one fo the "best" of the season.
"The Canadian Grand Prix is one of the highlights of the Formula 1 calendar, and a race that the whole paddock enjoys.
"It's a showcase for F1 at its best - the track has a natural flow that encourages bold driving, but which punishes mistakes with narrow run-offs and uncompromising concrete walls. The track surface is abrasive and relatively gripless, and the long back straight is perfect for lengthy slipstreaming battles and overtaking.
"In addition, the Canadian and North American fans are passionate and knowledgeable about the sport - it's one of those races that's packed-out from Thursday to Sunday, and filled with a varied and exciting support race timetable.
"It's one of the best races of the year."
Jenson Button is at 50/1, according to Paddy Power, to win the Canadian Grand Prix.