Lando Norris claims that the team “took a couple of steps back to try and move forward” after a strong start to 2019.
The British rookie had made it into Q3 at both the Australian and Bahrain GP’s, picking up a P6 finish in the latter as McLaren enjoy a strong start to the new season.
Norris claims that this upturn in form for the team, winless in Formula 1 since 2012, is down to a simplified approach to the MCL34.
“We’ve tried to make [the car] a bit more simple this year,” said Norris, speaking to Sky Sports F1.
“It was getting complicated and there were so many things leading onto different bits, which wasn’t confusing but it was just becoming complicated.
“In some ways, we took a couple of steps back to try and move forward, and we’ve given ourselves a better platform to start off.”
McLaren Sporting Director Gil de Ferran believes the team’s promising start to the season is due to the quality of its personnel.
Several key figures – including chassis chief Tim Goss, lead engineer Matt Morris, as well as Racing Director Eric Boullier – left the team after 2018.
McLaren recruited James Key as their new Technical Director, but he only began working with the team in Bahrain, while Andreas Seidl will not take up his role of Managing Director until the start of May.
“I guess if you recall even last year I always said we had great people at McLaren,” de Ferran told Motorsport Week.
“And I think with little changes in the organisation that we made, and the way we are dealing with each other, that talent is shining through.
“This is a team effort, and as a team working together really is something that makes a huge difference.
“There was a lot of effort into exactly that subject: how do we work better together? How do we collaborate better together? And, largely, with the same personnel we have improved a lot.
“And hopefully we’ll continue to do that; it was James’ first weekend so he’s a new talent that comes into the team.
“Andreas will come later on in the year but I think as long as we keep improving on how we collaborate and work together we’ll continue to get better. Often not enough credit is given to that account.”