Spanish GP upgrades will provide McLaren with ‘interesting’ comparison

Lando Norris' podium in Imola was followed by a scoreless weekend for McLaren in Miami, and Daniel Ricciardo has not scored since Australia.

McLaren team principal Andreas Seidl has confirmed that his team will be introducing upgrades to their car at this weekend’s Spanish Grand Prix as they look to climb back into the points.

McLaren walked away from the Miami Grand Prix last time out with nothing to show for their efforts for the second time this season after a difficult weekend.

Daniel Ricciardo was eliminated from Q2 due to a start-up issue, while Lando Norris – after getting into the top 10 following a sublime qualifying effort – was wiped out by AlphaTauri’s Pierre Gasly having looked on for a points finish.

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Ricciardo was unable to bring home any fruits in 13th, reminding the British team that, while they have made improvements since Bahrain, they are still susceptible to tough weekends.

The inconsistency is something that they will be aiming to smooth out with upgrades they are bringing to Barcelona this weekend.

“Whilst the race result in Miami wasn’t what we wanted it to be, the team are fully focused on the Barcelona weekend and the European double-header ahead of us,” said Seidl in his race preview.

“Spain is a great all-rounder track, with a nice mixture of high and low speed corners, plus areas that are more technically difficult. We’ve had some solid results there over the last few years with good points scored, which we’re looking to continue this year.”

The German revealed that changes are on the way as they aim to more consistently challenge Mercedes for podium finishes.

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“We are bringing some upgrades to the car for the weekend. I know it’s been an extremely busy week or so for many of the teams making changes ahead of Barcelona so it’s going to continue to be a tight fight for points,” he explained.

McLaren set 367 laps between Ricciardo and Norris at the first pre-season test in Barcelona as Norris set the fourth fastest lap overall, so there was ambiguity as to what happened with their performance from there.

However, the race this weekend will be a good opportunity for them to cross reference their car now to the performance they showed back in February.

“We performed well at this track in pre-season testing so it will be interesting to see how our car will perform with the upgrades we’ve made since then,” added Seidl. 

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“Hopefully we can have some good battles and get both cars back into the fight for good points.” 

McLaren are fourth in the Constructors’ Championship after five rounds, an impressive standing considering their woeful beginning to the year in Bahrain.