Zak Brown explains why Lando Norris shouldn’t worry about McLaren’s woeful Bahrain test

McLaren conducted minimal running during pre-season testing, following several issues with the MCL60.

2023 is looking set to be a very challenging season for McLaren, with the Woking-based side having endured a nightmare start to the season in pre-season testing.

The British side have arguably endured more issues than any other team, with McLaren Racing CEO Zak Brown having admitted that the team haven’t “hit” their development targets for the MCL60.

Due to several issues, the team have completed minimal running, with the true extent of their issues not set to be discovered until next weekend’s Bahrain Grand Prix.

With the issues they’ve faced in mind, Brown is unsure where the team will actually find themselves amongst the pack, with the likelihood being that next weekend won’t be a pretty one for McLaren.

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The only positive for the outfit is that they have “a lot of development coming”, meaning their issues will hopefully be solved during the early stages of the imminent season.

“It’s hard to know until we get going,” Brown told

“We know we set some goals for development, which we didn’t hit, and we felt it was better to be honest about that.  

“Like everyone, we have a lot of development coming. So, we are encouraged by what we see around the corner.  

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“I think we will be going into the first race off of our projected targets, but it is hard to really know where that means we will be on the grid.”

Rookie Oscar Piastri, of course, drove McLaren’s 2022 car during the post-season test last year, meaning he has an understanding of whether their new challenger is an improvement or not.

The Australian believes they have made a “small step” this year, with the car set to improve once some upgrades are introduced.

“I would say a small step from last year,” Piastri said.

“We know we’ve got a few things in the pipeline for hopefully soon in season. But so far, it’s I think similar to what I remember from my limited experience in a ground-effect car.”

Brown went on to admit that the team’s goal to return to the front will “take a little bit more time” following a challenging start to the season, with the American being aware that McLaren “need to pick up the pace”.

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“Our aspirations are to get back to the front,” Brown said.

“We know that will take a little bit more time. All the technology infrastructure is either in or going to be pretty much completed this year. So that’s quite exciting. 

“We have some good developments coming, but so does every other single team in F1. We need to pick up the pace.”