Vital Login
Social Login

Other Sites

Network Navigation

Vital Partners

'If It's F1, It's Vital'

McLaren cannot hide disappointment

Going into this season, many thought that McLaren would have to play catch up during the early part of the season due to their poor winter testing session and that really hasn't changed, the only surprise element is they are already ahead of the likes of Mercedes and Ferrari, something which didn't look possible when the teams packed up their belongings in Barcelona last month.

McLaren may have made huge strides, but to take it forward, they now need to make the next step which is to challenge the Red Bull's and in particular 2010 World champion Sebastian Vettel.

China had hoped to be a race which McLaren could take it to Red Bull, McLaren were bringing another upgrade package to Shanghai, while Red Bull appeared to be having issues with their KERS device.

The gap looked like it could become closer from last week in Malaysia and McLaren driver Jenson Button was confident the team would enjoy a good weekend when speaking at Thursday's press conference.

'In terms of fine-tuning the car, hopefully we will get a bit closer this weekend, When we were testing in Malaysia we were making changes and it was making a massive difference in terms of lap time and consistency.

'I think we probably can make more headway with Red Bull Racing, because of not really knowing completely our car and not having the perfect set-up over the last couple of races.

'We have some updates here. I don't know if Red Bull Racing has, it is difficult to know, but I think you will also see a couple of other teams quick here.
Button told Autosport Magazine before adding: if we get a nice clean race start then I think we can have a fun race and the pace will be quite similar [to Red Bull].'

Fast forward 24 hours and once again the reining F1 champ was on top of the time sheets for Red Bull for both practice sessions.

In FP1 the McLaren's were 2 seconds behind Vettel and Webber, while in FP2 the gap was a lot closer, but the race pace speed appears to give the Red Bull's a clear advantage over their rivals going into the weekend.

'We had a good day, but it's only Friday and so it's early in the race weekend.

'We found a good rhythm and we're happy with the car. There's still a lot to do and I think it will be tight in qualifying and the race, so we'll look where we can improve.'
Red Bull's Sebastian Vettel told the BBC after Friday's two practice sessions.

The session left Button clearly frustrated, with all the optimism from Thursday regarding the new upgrades and closing the gap to Vettel gone from memory: 'I'll be surprised if we can fight for pole position in qualifying as they look very fast.

'The car is still a good car to drive but we didn't improve the balance and we will look at why the changes we made didn't give us the improvement. '


McLaren may well choose to not run with the upgrades they brought to China, with both Button and team-mate Lewis Hamilton not happy with the changes.

'I don't think it's as good as [what] we had before.' Hamilton added. 'In the afternoon we chose to go with the upgrade we had but I've been really struggling with the balance so I don't know if it's the upgrade.

'I was able to get a reasonable lap time but I wasn't comfortable in the car.'


Can McLaren recover in time to make Sunday's race entertaining? Or will Vettel dominate once more? Join the debate on our VitalF1.com Forum.








Join Vital F1

It's easy to join up and join in on VitalF1.com, simply click the link and enjoy getting involved!

If you are already a member of Vital Football, your logins will automatically work on VitalF1.com!

The Journalist

Writer: Red5 Mail feedback, articles or suggestions

Date:Friday April 15 2011

Time: 1:00PM

 

Have Your Say

Log in...
with your social network     OR     with your Vital account

Recent Articles

McLaren target race wins (Thursday April 24 2014)

Red Bull play down driver row (Tuesday April 22 2014)

McLaren & Red Bull row over Fallows (Tuesday April 22 2014)

2014 - China - Race (Sunday April 20 2014)

Blog: Chinese GP Report (Sunday April 20 2014)

Blog: Shanghai Qualifying (Saturday April 19 2014)

2014 - China - Qualifying (Saturday April 19 2014)

2014 - China - FP3 (Saturday April 19 2014)

2014 - China - FP2 (Friday April 18 2014)

2014 - China - FP1 (Friday April 18 2014)

Hass might join F1 grid in 2016 (Wednesday April 16 2014)

Red Bull lose appeal (Wednesday April 16 2014)

Brawn to return to Ferrari? (Tuesday April 15 2014)

Domenicali quits (Monday April 14 2014)

Red Bull appeal begins (Monday April 14 2014)

Who will win the Chinese GP? (Sunday April 13 2014)

Mercedes hit out at Ferrari (Saturday April 12 2014)

Perez nearly quit F1 (Friday April 11 2014)

Mercedes stay on top in Bahrain (Thursday April 10 2014)

Red Bull & McLaren in legal row (Thursday April 10 2014)

Blog: The Battle of Mercedes (Thursday April 10 2014)

Mercedes on top in first test (Wednesday April 9 2014)

Formula One should celebrate new era (Wednesday April 9 2014)

F1 cost cap plan abandoned (Tuesday April 8 2014)

Two new teams to join Formula One? (Tuesday April 8 2014)

Maldonado punished (Monday April 7 2014)

Formula One puts on a showcase (Monday April 7 2014)

Blog: Bahrain GP Report (Monday April 7 2014)

2014 - Bahrain - Race (Sunday April 6 2014)

Blog: Sakhir Qualifying (Saturday April 5 2014)

2014 - Bahrain - Qualifying (Saturday April 5 2014)

2014 - Bahrain - FP3 (Saturday April 5 2014)

2014 - Bahrain - FP2 (Friday April 4 2014)

2014 - Bahrain - FP1 (Friday April 4 2014)

Cautious optimism for Schumacher (Friday April 4 2014)

Williams resolve team orders row (Friday April 4 2014)

Hamilton & Rosberg on par (Thursday April 3 2014)

Sauber have identified their issues (Thursday April 3 2014)

Sauber & Caterham make driver changes (Wednesday April 2 2014)

Alonso finds the positives (Tuesday April 1 2014)

Fuel-gate rumbles on (Tuesday April 1 2014)

Red Bull are closing the gap (Tuesday April 1 2014)

Who will win the Bahrain GP? (Monday March 31 2014)

Blog: Malaysian GP Report (Sunday March 30 2014)

2014 - Malaysia - Race (Sunday March 30 2014)

Blog: Sepang Qualifying (Saturday March 29 2014)

2014 - Malaysia - Qualifying (Saturday March 29 2014)

2014 - Malaysia - FP3 (Saturday March 29 2014)

2014 - Malaysia - FP2 (Friday March 28 2014)

2014 - Malaysia - FP1 (Friday March 28 2014)

Sutil unhappy with weight issues (Thursday March 27 2014)

Video Feature: Malaysia Preview (Wednesday March 26 2014)

McLaren pushing hard (Wednesday March 26 2014)

Red Bull owner slams F1 (Tuesday March 25 2014)

Lotus hoping for improvement (Monday March 24 2014)

Date set for Red Bull's appeal (Monday March 24 2014)

Who will win in Malaysia? (Saturday March 22 2014)

Red Bull looking to improve (Friday March 21 2014)

F1's new sound (Thursday March 20 2014)

Williams delighted with Bottas drive (Wednesday March 19 2014)

Lotus problems down to MGU-K component (Wednesday March 19 2014)

Perfect debut for Magnussen (Tuesday March 18 2014)

Disappointing weekend for Red Bull (Monday March 17 2014)

Bittersweet weekend for Mercedes (Monday March 17 2014)

F1 Blog: Australian GP: New dawn (Sunday March 16 2014)

2014 - Australia - Race (Sunday March 16 2014)

2014 - Australia - Qualifying (Saturday March 15 2014)

2014 - Australia - FP3 (Saturday March 15 2014)

2014 - Australia - FP2 (Friday March 14 2014)

2014 - Australia - FP1 (Friday March 14 2014)

Stewards to be lenient in Australia (Thursday March 13 2014)

Chilton targets maiden point (Thursday March 13 2014)

Video: Ferrari's internal battle (Thursday March 13 2014)

F1 Blog: The Braces Are Off (Wednesday March 12 2014)

Lotus depending on Renault improvements (Wednesday March 12 2014)

Ecclestone targets Azerbaijan (Tuesday March 11 2014)

No change for Schumacher (Tuesday March 11 2014)

Qualifying tweaks confirmed (Monday March 10 2014)

Lotus will recover (Saturday March 8 2014)

Archived Articles

List All Vital F1 Articles
Have your say
Click here to suggest an article
Click here to suggest a poll

Vital Members League (view all)

1. Red5 998
2. DJ 856
3. The Fear 769
4. Villaininthemerde 612
5. johnkelv 559
6. Druss_the_Legend 510
7. Push The Button 426
8. col8 334
9. __villa__ 145
10. The Intimidator 138

Current Site Poll (view all polls)

Are Mercedes catchable this season?
Yes 29%
No 57%
Unsure 14%