McLaren to run shakedown ‘very close’ to Barcelona test

Jamie Woodhouse
The McLaren MCL36 from above.

A view of the McLaren MCL36 from above. February 2022.

McLaren do plan to give the MCL36 a shakedown run before the opening testing period at the Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya.

Launch season so far in 2022 has presented quite a divide in how teams approach the start of this new regulatory era in Formula 1.

While Haas and Red Bull only revealed their liveries for 2022, McLaren joined Aston Martin in unveiling their actual challenger for the upcoming season, although McLaren did confirm that some bits and pieces had been hidden.

While the season does not start until Bahrain and Friday practice on March 18, there are two periods of testing before that, first in Barcelona from February 23-25, before the official pre-season test between March 10-12 at the Bahrain International Circuit.

Teams also have two filming days which they can use in a season for a limited session of running, with the period between launching and testing often a prime spot to fit one of them in.

Aston Martin gave us our first sight of a new 2022 car out on the track, letting the AMR22 loose around Silverstone.

And McLaren too are planning a shakedown run for the MCL36 on the eve of the Barcelona test.

The McLaren MCL26 is launched along with other McLaren cars. February 2022.
McLaren MCL36 in the foreground as the team launches three cars ahead of the new season. February 2022.

“Similar to probably every other team, we’re also planning to do a filming day very close to the start of the official test in Barcelona,” McLaren team principal Andreas Seidl told

“That’s in the schedule. [We] still have a lot of boxes to tick in the next week to be finally ready for that.

“But with the great work everyone is putting in under the leadership of Piers [Thynne], James [Key] and Andrea [Stella], I’m absolutely confident that we’ll be ready.”

While McLaren have those shielded parts to reveal, technical director James Key believes every team will also have early developments to add, a process that will continue during the first year of this new era in F1.

“There are some sensitive areas, but a lot more will be seen when we’re running the car,” Key confirmed.

“As far as the development plan is concerned, like every team, I’m sure we have development steps to come early on because we’re still very much in the leaning process at this stage.


“The development rate and the proactivity that everyone is showing to find that next step is really strong. So we’ll be bringing some updates to Bahrain. And then the next tranche of those is already in process now.

“You’ll see the car change, but I’m sure everyone’s car is going to change.”


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