F1 »

Whitmarsh: we're sticking with MP4-28

McLaren team principal Martin Whitmarsh has said that they will stick with the new 'revolutionary' MP4-28 for 2013 and won't roll back to last year's design.
Despite a depressingly poor start to the 2013 in F1 free practice on Friday in Australia, McLaren says that it isn't considering reverting to a version of their successful 2012 car and it is determined to continue working with the new MP4-28 model.

"I don't think any of us enjoyed yesterday at all," agreed team principal Martin Whitmarsh on Saturday morning. "We did some work overnight to try and improve the situation. In truth I don't know, [but] we hope and believe we have improved a bit."

Whether that was the case or not was difficult to tell, as both the free practice and qualifying sessions at Albert Park, Melbourne on Saturday were hit by rain, making proper evaluation impossible even for the teams with extensive telemetry to work from.

"It's serious because we are a front running team," said Whitmarsh when asked how concerned he was about the disappointing situation with the new 2013-spec car. "I think being frank about it, we don't have the car where it should or where we want it to be. We've been in these situations too many times before.

"We've got some data, not as much as we'd like, but we'll go away and work on that," he continued. "There is no magic, no secrets in F1, we've got to do the work, be disciplined and deliver performance," he said, adding that he thought that his two drivers "were an inspiration yesterday" with how they had tackled the disappointing situation with an ill-handling car and how they had managed to pull the team together.

"At the moment this car is too peaky in its performance so we certainly didn't get the best out of it yesterday," Whitmarsh continued. "I think it's more difficult to get the best out of it in these real-world conditions, and that's what we've got to work hard on."

McLaren were one of the few teams to go for a major change in design approach over the offseason, while the majority of other teams opted for 'evolutionary' car designs for 2013. Whitmarsh admitted that while it was possible to revert to the MP4-27 car that saw out the 2012 season, he wasn't in favour of that approach and felt that McLaren would be better off persevering to work and understand the new car.

"I think we've got to gather the data and I'm sure we can develop this car and the aim is to give ourselves the ability to develop this car throughout the whole year," he said.

"Probably if we had stuck with the original concept of last year's car we would be stronger here today," he conceded. "But we made a decision, we'll now work through this and I'm sure we have a car that has more potential than the one we had last year.

"That's the thing about F1 now, the season's incredibly long," he pointed out. "We are going to be racing until almost December so we've got to believe we can catch up with our competitors. I think there is no doubt that we can and we'll push every single race as we normally do and we'll find a way to get ourselves back into contention as soon as we can."

Related Pictures

Click on relevant pic to enlarge
16.03.2013- Qualifying, Sergio Perez (MEX) McLaren MP4-28
16.03.2013- Qualifying, Sergio Perez (MEX) McLaren MP4-28
16.03.2013- Qualifying, Sergio Perez (MEX) McLaren MP4-28
16.03.2013- Free Practice 3, Martin Whitmarsh (GBR), Chief Executive Officer Mclaren
16.03.2013- Martin Whitmarsh (GBR), Chief Executive Officer Mclaren
Lando Norris joins McLaren`s Young Driver Programme
McLaren, 2011 launch, [Credit: Crash PA]
Nico Rosberg and Fernando Alonso - Mercedes, McLaren
Ayrton Senna - McLaren. 1993 Donington Park
Lando Norris, McLaren Autosport BRDC Awards [Credit: Martyn Pass PR]
27.11.2016 - Race, Jenson Button (GBR)  McLaren Honda MP4-31
27.11.2016 - Race, Jenson Button (GBR)  McLaren Honda MP4-31
27.11.2016 - Race, Marcus Ericsson (SUE) Sauber C34 and Fernando Alonso (ESP) McLaren Honda MP4-31
27.11.2016 - Race, Jolyon Palmer (GBR) Renault Sport F1 Team RS16 and Jenson Button (GBR)  McLaren Honda MP4-31
27.11.2016 - Race, Start of the race, Fernando Alonso (ESP) McLaren Honda MP4-31 off trach and Max Verstappen (NED) Red Bull Racing RB12 spins
27.11.2016 - Race, Fernando Alonso (ESP) McLaren Honda MP4-31
27.11.2016 - Race, Jenson Button (GBR)  McLaren Honda MP4-31
27.11.2016 - Race, Jenson Button (GBR)  McLaren Honda MP4-31

Join the conversation - Add your comment

Please login or register before adding your comments.

Although the administrators and moderators of this website will attempt to keep all objectionable comments off these pages, it is impossible for us to review all messages. All messages express the views of the poster, and neither Crash Media Group nor Crash.Net will be held responsible for the content of any message. We do not vouch for or warrant the accuracy, completeness or usefulness of any message, and are not responsible for the contents of any message. If you find a message objectionable, please contact us and inform us of the problem or use the [report] function next to the offending post. Any message that does not conform with the policy of this service can be edited or removed with immediate effect.

bob - Unregistered

March 16, 2013 5:35 PM

For crying out loud, would everyone give the McLaren bashing a rest! If I recall rightly, last year Ferrari were in the EXACT same situation at the start of the season. Lotus/Renault haven't been much chop since 2006. Merc have been hopeless since the end of 2009. Red Bull is the only team to be consistently dominant since 2009/10. And even they started last year behind the 8 ball after TOTAL domination in 2011. So PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE can we give it a rest? It's getting very boring!

oldtimer - Unregistered

March 16, 2013 3:09 PM

As Whitmarsh says we 've been in this situation before, why? one might reasonably ask. I would have thought that they need to have a serious look at how they do things wrong so often and how often the others get it right. There's no doubt they can develop a car to be fast but getting it right in the first place and keeping it there seems to be beyond them. I can see Ron Dennis waking from a long slumber and kicking **** big time unless there is a rapid change of fortunes.

© 1999 - 2017 Crash Media Group

The total or partial reproduction of text, photographs or illustrations is not permitted in any form.