McLaren executive director Zak Brown is confident that the Formula 1 team is "in for a strong season" through 2018 after a positive winter following the switch to new engine supplier Renault.

McLaren enters the 2018 season aiming to end its barren run of almost four years without a podium finish, having struggled through the last three campaigns with Honda.

The two parties cut ties at the end of last year, allowing McLaren to strike an engine deal with Renault that is already showing good signs of progress according to star driver Fernando Alonso.

Asked for an update on McLaren's progress through the winter, Brown said that everything was going according to plan despite the team initially being two weeks behind schedule, and that confidence is running high.

"Everything is going really well on the car design," Brown said. "We have the engine in the back. We’ve just passed our crash tests. Those all went according to plan.

"We will launch the car on February 23, and we will be on-track for the first time on February 26. All the simulations that we’re doing are where we want to be. Last year the majority of our simulation... sometimes it works in simulation and doesn’t work when it hits the race track, and it did more often than not last year.

"So I think we’re going to be in for a strong season."

McLaren last scored a podium finish at the 2014 Australian Grand Prix, while it has not won a race since the end of the 2012 season in Brazil when Jenson Button was victorious at Interlagos.



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