Alone: Is this a sustainable trend reversal or was it just a flash in the pan?
Lando Norris fears that McLaren’s good form was due to the street circuit in Albert Park. “There were a few things that we did well, for example a slightly different direction with the set-up,” he admits, but admits: “At the same time it was probably mainly because of the track.” With “70:30 or rather 80:20” is how the Brit puts the impact of the super-fast track in the St. Kilda district.
His teammate Daniel Ricciardo doesn’t believe in a miracle either. “It’s not like we did anything crazy,” he says. After all: “We build trust in the car and can bring it closer to the limit. That helps too.”
So much for the cockpit perspective. From the command post, team boss Andreas Seidl identifies the surprisingly rapid upswing at three points.
“We had a few small upgrades on the car that worked and improved the performance,” explains the German. “The fluid layout of our package also helped. And we implemented the empirical values from the first races here well and were able to increase our competitiveness.”
But there are more positive things to report. In Saudi Arabia, the squad from Woking shone with the best pit stops. Seidl: “This shows that we have finally taken the steps we wanted in this area. I am very happy with it.”
Now is the time to keep calm. “We now have a clear plan of what we have to do with the car,” says Seidl. “But despite all our ambitions, we have to remain patient. Our package is currently good enough to fight for places in the top ten. That’s better than at the start of the season, but obviously not where we want to be. We still need a second to go up.”
The McLaren team boss steps on the euphoria brakes. So that the trend reversal is not just a flash in the pan after all.