McLaren must ‘face the reality’ of Ferrari fight

Finley Crebolder
Carlos Sainz ahead of Daniel Ricciardo during the Hungarian GP. Hungaroring August 2021.

Carlos Sainz's Ferrari ahead of Daniel Ricciardo's McLaren which locks up during the Hungarian Grand Prix. Hungaroring August 2021.

Andreas Seidl says McLaren must face the reality that they will most likely lose the battle for P3 against Ferrari this season.

The two teams have been locked in a tight fight for the final spot in the top three in the Constructors’ Championship all year with McLaren leading it for most of the campaign.

Ferrari have firmly gained the upper hand in recent rounds though, thanks largely to their engine upgrade, and now hold a lead of 31.5 points with just three rounds to go.

Seidl accepts that, for his team, P3 is all but lost.

“Clearly, we have to face the reality. If everything goes well for Ferrari now, at the end of season it will be difficult,” he said.

“But at the same time, as long as it’s theoretically possible, and I’ve seen several times this year and last year what can happen on a race weekend, we will try to hang in there.

“More important is simply now to get back to simply scoring the results that are on the table for us because I think also in the last two race weekends, where we didn’t have let’s say the strongest car in this battle we are in, it was still possible to score good results.

“That is what we didn’t manage, and that’s what we need to do better.”

While Ferrari have been much stronger in the last few rounds, Seidl also feels McLaren have not fulfilled their own potential.

In both Mexico and Brazil, one papaya car went from the front to the back at the start after being involved in a collision, while Daniel Ricciardo retired at Interlagos with an engine issue when running in the top 10.

“It is clear that on certain tracks our car is a lot stronger,” said Seidl.

“But what we didn’t manage now in recent weeks is simply to score the points that were on the table for us. And that’s obviously disappointing. But at the same time, there are reasons why.


“So we simply need to truly get back now to the last three races and try to do better.

“Brazil was the second hit in a row after Mexico to our battle in the Constructors’ Championship, so I think we need to be realistic now what is possible to achieve this year.

“At the same time, independent of the battle in the Constructors’ Championship, it’s simply important now in the last few races that we get back to positive momentum and that we score simply the points that are on the table for us.”


Ferrari deserve credit for late-season power gains

While McLaren had the third spot for a good while, Ferrari now occupy the position.