McLaren sporting director Gil de Ferran believes the opening lap incident in Shanghai proves racing can be “cruel”.
The McLaren duo of Carlos Sainz and Lando Norris collided with Toro Rosso’s Daniil Kvyat at turn six on lap one of the Chinese Grand Prix.
Both drivers would be forced to pit, and despite their best efforts, P14 for Sainz was where the recovery ended, while Norris retired his MCL34 with a few laps remaining.
The Woking outfit have shown signs of improvement in 2019, with both drivers making Q3 in Bahrain where Norris went on to finish P6, giving de Ferran and the rest of the team motivation to come back fighting in Azerbaijan.
“Racing can be very cruel sometimes, and [in China] it was,” he told The Chequered Flag.
“Obviously, the first-lap incident destroyed our race, but we tried to do our best and raced hard to the end.
“Despite it all, there were several positives to come from this grand prix, particularly our race pace, which was very competitive when compared to the guys that finished in the points.
“We also learned more about our car on this very different track, and now we look ahead to another fighting weekend in Baku.”