McLaren is ready to face Austin, Texas, for this weekend's US Grand Prix. McLaren Team principal Andreas Seidl debriefed the media in a selected virtual session in which MotorLat was present.
As F1 is facing coming back to race in the Circuit of the Americas after its absence from the 2020 championship calendar, Seidl does not see the preparation for the weekend being any different because of the break. “I would say, giving the fact that this is a track where we have been several times, I don’t think it will make a big difference in the preparation than when we were here the last year. So, preparation as usual here.”
Asked if McLaren’s expectations are set on the steps of the podium this weekend, the German said: “Aiming high, but difficult to say. I think, the reality is as we’ve seen, teams like Ferrari have made a good step forward with their package. But as always, we know the strengths of our package and we have to make sure we extract the maximum from what we have.”
How important is finishing the year 3rd in the constructor’s standings for McLaren and how important are the bonuses and advantages this position gives the team for the upcoming years: “First of all, P3 for me and for the team is important simply for the sporting perspective. You wake up in the morning because we want to challenge our competitors and beat them. And that’s what we have in mind going to every race. That’s the most important thing.” Said the McLaren Team Principal.
With both Mercedes drivers having changed some important Power Unit’s elements, Daniel Ricciardo’s engine changed at Turkey and with Aston Martin and Williams confirming they’ll be penalizing one of their cars this weekend with modifications on their customer Mercedes PU, Norris’ engine condition is on the air: “At the moment there’s no plan in place for the change. The possibility is open.”
“I think, with every manufacturer, at the end that’s the reality with the competition as it is, that everyone gets pushed to the absolute limit of the technology we are using. It makes you be on the edge of beating the season with three PU units. We’re going to dialogue with Mercedes to see which issues there are.”
With 7.5 points separating them on the standings, the battle McLaren and Ferrari are facing towards the end of the season for the final P3 in the championship is an every-weekend-topic of interest. About this, Andreas Seidl concluded saying: “In terms of the tracks we are going until the end of the season, there will definitely be tracks where that are more in our favor and tracks that are more in favor of Ferrari. Again, I think it’s a fair enough battle, extracting the maximum for each race. It will be very important to score what we can with both cars against a very strong competitor. We simply have to give it all until the last race. The most important thing for me with the team is the sporting aspect of this battle.”