McLaren don’t have ‘third or fourth quickest car’

Date published: November 20 2020

Racing Point Renault McLaren

McLaren principal Andreas Seidl sees his team as underdogs in the battle for P3, saying they don’t have the “third or fourth quickest car”.

With three races remaining in the 2020 season the battle for P3 in the Constructors’ Championship is set to go all the way to the season-ending Abu Dhabi Grand Prix.

Racing Point hold P3 following the Turkish Grand with 154 points, but McLaren are their closest challenger only five points adrift.

Before Formula 1’s trip to Istanbul Park Renault were the final part of the equation, but a P3 and P4 for the improving Ferrari team has launched them into contention with three rounds left.

And Seidl doesn’t think his team are leading the battle pace-wise, despite finishing P5 and P8 at Istanbul Park.

“It was obviously great for us to score this result because it kept us in the fight for the Constructors’ Championship,” he told Motorsport.com.

“Which is good, but we definitely do not have I would say the third or fourth quickest car at the moment in this battle.

“And with what we’ve seen also from Ferrari, one more good result and suddenly it’s a fight between four teams for this P3, P4, P5, P6.”

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Seidl isn’t “worried” about Ferrari, but said it was only realistic to expect the upturn in form which they have enjoyed in the second part of the season.

“I’m not worried or concerned, I’m just realistic. And I know what a team like Ferrari with all the resources they are having can do, and it’s not a surprise that they are coming back during the season,” he said.

“So we never underestimated this power that Ferrari has. They have two great drivers, and obviously a great team. So that’s the reality we’re in.

“We have a competitive car, which is aggressive compared to last year, we have now I don’t know how many points, probably after this number of races already more than last year, which shows again that we made a great step forward with the team.

“But at the same time, we have very strong competitors. And we just hope we can keep this battle alive until the last race, and we will give it all as a team.

“I see how committed everyone is inside the team, how great the spirit is in the garage and back home. And that gives me a lot of confidence that we can keep this battle alive.

“It’s important now on our side to focus on ourselves, to see that we can still extract more performance out of the car, especially on Saturdays also. It’s important to keep the level of reliability up.

“Then it will be important to have clean race weekends, optimise the operation as well out here in terms of strategy, in terms of pit stops.

“And together with our two good drivers, I think we can keep this battle alive. And that’s what we focus on.”

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