McLaren reveal latest upgrade package ‘game plan’ and main MCL38 weakness

Henry Valantine
Lando Norris ahead of McLaren team-mate Oscar Piastri.

Oscar Piastri and Lando Norris secured a hefty haul of points in Australia.

McLaren CEO Zak Brown revealed the team is looking to improve its DRS, having been “pretty slow” in a straight line in Saudi Arabia in particular.

Alongside that however, he added their “game plan” is to introduce their first significant upgrade of the season at the Miami Grand Prix in May.

McLaren looking for DRS improvements; Miami upgrades pencilled

The gains McLaren made with its rear wing open in Jeddah were not what they were hoping to see compared to their rivals, but given that the impact it has in Australia was limited by comparison, that enabled the MCL38 to perform closer to its overall potential.

Lando Norris finished on the podium at the last round, taking third place while closely followed by team-mate Oscar Piastri in fourth, but team CEO Brown explained there’s more to be done to make the most of the team’s rear wing.

“That’s definitely an area that we’re looking to improve,” Brown told Channel 4 when asked about the DRS of the MCL38.

“I think we improved that this weekend. This particular track [Albert Park] doesn’t have a huge DRS effect.

“We were pretty slow in Saudi, we think we’ve made an improvement this weekend, so let’s see – trying to improve everywhere, obviously.”

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Regarding developments moving forward, Brown explained that McLaren are targeting the Miami Grand Prix, after Japan and China, for their first major development of the season.

He hopes that can keep the team on the development curve they began midway through last season, although he is well aware that their rivals will be looking to keep pace with their upgrade plan.

“I think Miami’s the game plan at the moment,” Brown confirmed.

“We’re pushing hard, as is everybody else. But I think if we can stay on the development trajectory we’ve been on since the second half of last year, we should just get quicker and rack up some more podiums this year.

“Everything’s looking good on the data. Our data correlates. Last year we knew we would be strong in Austria and then both cars at Silverstone, [the] team did an awesome job.

“I see no reason why that can’t continue. Unfortunately, we have nine racing teams that have the same ambition as us, but I think we’ll continue to get stronger over the season.”

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