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McLaren: Don't expect another 2019-type step, warns Brown

NEWS STORY
15/01/2020

It's a sign of the times perhaps that the sport is still celebrating McLaren's fourth in the 2019 constructor standings.

Admittedly, compared to those dark days of 2015 and 2017 it was a massive improvement for the 12-time Drivers' Championship winners and 8-time champion constructors. Indeed, at Williams, 7 and 9 titles, respectively, even ninth would be seen as progress come the end of the season.

However, with precious few regulation changes, not to mention the raft of changes in 2021, and the switch to Mercedes engines, little wonder that Zak Brown has warned fans not to expect another significant step forward this year.

"We need to keep going forward," the American told race fans in Birmingham at the weekend. "We had a huge step, obviously, from 2018 to 2019, but part of that was we were so poor in 2018 that it was hard not to take a big step in 2019. So I don't see that same step coming from 2019 to 2020.

"The regulations are very, very similar," he continued, "so I don't think the grid's going to look a lot different. There will probably be a little bit of surprise here and there.

"We're still a young team. James Key didn't develop last year's car, this year's he did. So let's see what that looks like, and Andreas Seidl only joined in the middle of the year.

"Really, what we need to do is just get tidier, more race fit, get a good head-start," he continued, "the 2021 car's already in the wind tunnel, we feel pretty good about the 2020 car.

"We just need to kind of keep head down and know that it's not going to happen overnight. We're going to have some great weekends and we're going to have some bad weekends. But let's just hope that we keep moving forward."

Reflecting on a season in which the Woking team returned to the podium for the first time since Melbourne 2014, Brown was keen to praise drivers, Carlos Sainz and Lando Norris, and in particular the way they work together.

"They didn't know each other before and when we first introduced them, I think as Carlos said in one of his interviews, Lando was a bit shy, but they get along really well when they're on the track with each other.

"I'm not nervous - unlike maybe the Haas duo - when they're around the track or anybody, they've got a real respect, but they race each other really hard.

"And they they've been very great to work with and the sponsors and I think all the fans really enjoy them. It's great in this kind of new era of Formula 1 to expose what goes on in Formula 1 in a more natural way."

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READERS COMMENTS

 

1. Posted by Wokingchap, 15/01/2020 14:07

"Can you imagine TeamCheat issuing a statement like this to the 'tifosi'? Horses head in someone's bed material. I am happy to read a realistic outlook.
Good luck McLaren for 2020."

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