Lando Norris makes admission about new ‘big’ McLaren upgrades

McLaren have introduced their final big upgrades package of the season at the 2023 Singapore Grand Prix this weekend.

Lando Norris has revealed that McLaren’s upgrades for this weekend’s Singapore Grand Prix have been designed to improve “specific areas” of the MCL60, which has proven to be a competitive car since the Austrian Grand Prix.

After starting the season miserably as almost a backmarker, McLaren came to life this year following a huge upgrades package at the Red Bull Ring, where they instantly looked more competitive.

McLaren’s sudden pace was enough for Norris to finish second at the British Grand Prix and the Hungarian Grand Prix, before Oscar Piastri finished P2 in the Belgian Grand Prix sprint race.

It was a much-welcomed return to form for the Woking-based team, who are hoping to make another stride towards Red Bull with their third – and final – huge developments package.

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Amongst all their improvements, McLaren continue to struggle in low speed corners, something the Singapore upgrades will target.

Now that the side have a baseline, McLaren’s engineers have been able to improve “specific areas” of the MCL60.

Norris has been given the full upgrades package at the Marina Bay Circuit, which includes a new engine cover design, a new floor and new sidepods.

Similar to earlier in the season, Piastri has initially only been given a few of the new upgrades but will receive the full package next weekend at the Japanese Grand Prix.

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Norris isn’t necessarily expecting the upgrades to have an instant impact like they did back in Austria, with the British driver admitting that he’s having a “cautious” approach.

However, the 23-year-old has also pointed out that the upgrades are more of a first step towards improving the MCL60 at slow speeds, given that the developments aren’t targeting the car’s handling traits.

“The first time since we had a bit of a restructure to show something was Austria, that was just kind of putting load on the car,” Norris told The Race.

“Now it’s a bit more trying to target a few more specific areas, which is going to be the first time we’ve probably done that a little bit more.

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“So, I’m interested. It’s not going to help in exactly the places where, from a driving style, driving point of view, I would probably want it.

“But it should just help with a bit of overall load, the cornering speeds and consistency, tyre wear, traction, things like that.

“Maybe not so much specifically with allowing me to kind of drive the car a bit more in a way that I want. It’s not something to make me feel better in the car.