McLaren Belgian GP review

McLaren came away from a difficult weekend in Belgium with plenty of reasons to be positive. After a real struggle for Fernando on Friday and Saturday he shown what the car could do from the back of the field. The race started of in such a mess, incidents up and down the field. Sadly Jenson got hit in the rear which caused to much damage for him to carry on. Then the red flag moment. I just want to say how much of a relief it was to see K-Mag step out of that crash. After the red flag stoppage Fernando found himself in 4th place. He was always going to struggle to keep Lewis Hamilton behind him and the very fast Force Indias, but what he did in the final segment of the race was very impressive. For what must have seemed like an age, Fernando has both Williams and Kimi behind in, running very close to the back of him. But in true Fernando style he wasn’t going down without a fight and boy did he deliver. He managed to hold those three off and claim a brilliant 7th place. Spa was marked as a track McLaren would struggle at and to come away with points is a huge boost for the whole team.


Started: 22nd
Finished: 7th
Fastest Lap: 1m54.484 on lap 54 (+2.901s, 15th)
Pitstops: One: lap 24 (2.36s) [Prime-BackUp]

“It was an exciting race to drive and I had a good feeling throughout.

“We had good pace this weekend; we did better than expected on this track; we were in the top 10 with Jenson yesterday in qualifying; and we’ve scored points today.

“Believe me: a few months ago that would have been unthinkable on a circuit like this. That’s progress – real progress.

“And, after all the bad luck we’ve had so far this weekend, we finally got some good luck today. We started last, but we managed to keep away from all the incidents, gain some positions thanks to the Safety Car and then a couple more because of the red flag.

“We then put on fresh tyres and found ourselves in fourth place – and, better still, we had the pace to manage the situation afterwards.

“Okay, we couldn’t hold back Lewis [Hamilton], Checo [Perez] or Seb [Vettel], because they were just too fast, but we had enough pace to keep Valtteri [Bottas] behind all the way to the flag.

“Finally, it’s great news that we overtook Toro Rosso in the Constructors’ World Championship – I think we can be regularly in the points from now on.

“So, to sum up, this weekend we saw evidence of very good progress from the team; we’re moving in the right direction, that’s for sure.”


Started: 9th
Finished: DNF – retired on lap 1
Fastest Lap: –
Pitstops: None

“We looked really good for points today, so it’s disappointing that we didn’t score any, but it happens. I’ve been around long enough to know these things happen.

“I had a really good start – I got ahead of a Williams, pulled in front of a Red Bull and drew alongside a Force India. But then I lost a lot of places at La Source and ran wide. I rejoined the track, but Pascal [Wehrlein] made contact with me at Turn Five, damaging the rear of my car. There was a lot of damage and we were unable to complete the race.

“After such a short race, there’s not much more to say!”


McLaren German GP Review

McLaren are heading in to the summer break with a points scoring finish in Germany. This was the team’s 7th points scoring finish this season. Both Jenson and Fernando ran inside the top 10 for most parts of the race, but due to some fuel saving needed for both drivers it ended up where Jenson would remain in the top 10 at the end finishing 8th. Fernando sadly fell back in the closing stages to 12th place. The team are showing clear signs of progress at the half way point of the season now. The Hockenheim circuit was felt like it was going to be a tricky race for the team but a points finished ended up being well deserved.



Started:    13th
Finished:    12th
Fastest Lap:    1m20.132s on lap 50 (+1.690s, 13th)
Pitstops:    Three: laps 14 (2.58s), 28 (2.95s) and 47 (2.65s) [Option-Prime-Option-Option] 

“It was a very tough race, possibly one of the toughest so far this season, especially towards the end, when my tyres were finished and I had to do a lot of fuel-saving.

“We knew before we came here that it might be a tough weekend. Ultimately, I lost 10th position at the end of the race, so we didn’t score that last point that we were hoping for. But we just didn’t have the pace throughout the entire race.

“Getting ready for the Belgian Grand Prix is our priority now – hopefully we’ll come back stronger after the summer break.”


Started:    12th
Finished:    8th
Fastest Lap:    1m19.781s on lap 48 (+1.339s, 9th)
Pitstops:    Three: laps 13 (2.54s), 31 (2.40s) and 46 (2.74s) [Option-Prime-Option-Option]

“I made a very good start and made up most of the places there. After that, it was just about looking after the tyres, which were degrading faster than we’d expected. We also had to do a fair amount of fuel-saving, too, particularly in the last 10 laps. In fact, I went off the circuit towards the end, just because I was doing so much fuel-saving that I hit the brakes and they were just stone cold. I hadn’t even been braking hard.

“At the end, I was able to pick off Valtteri, who was struggling on his tyres. It feels satisfying to have beaten both Williams, but eighth was as good as it was going to get today – we were 20 seconds behind the car in front, and there’s still quite a bit to go before we catch those guys.

“Still, we’ve made good progress: we’re consistently fighting in the points, and the team are doing a great job this year, bringing something new to pretty much every single race. I want to say thank-you and well done to the whole team for their efforts.

“I’m looking forward to coming back and fighting after the summer break – but, right now, I’m looking forward to a holiday!”

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