McLaren updates have not completely fixed current problems

Despite introducing a number of new improvements at the Miami Grand Prix, McLaren has acknowledged that these changes have not fully resolved its problems in low-speed corners. The team faces constant challenges as it tries to find the right balance in its car’s performance for drivers Lando Norris and Oscar Piastri.

Going into the fifth race of the F1 season, the Woking-based team is experiencing a good uptick in performance with British driver Norris taking two podiums so far in his 2024 campaign. Despite this, when the end begins During the week of the Miami Grand Prix, team principal Andrea Stella admitted that her series of technical changes have not fully solved the persistent low-speed cornering handling problem.

McLaren’s improvements are substantial this weekend, with a new front wing and front suspension, a change to the sidepod intakes and engine cover, and also a small change to the rear suspension. But, according to the Italian, this is not enough.

“Not nearly as much as we would have liked,” Stella said of her updates to fix her current issues. “There are some more specific upgrades we need to offer for specific low-speed applications.”

The challenge, according to Stella, is to balance the car’s low- and high-speed performance, a common difficulty in ground-effect cars. The dynamics of this year’s car are particularly sensitive due to its reliance on maintaining an optimal ride height to maximize vacuum under the car.

“I think achieving a good balance between low and high speed is difficult with any type of car, and for different specific reasons,” Stella explained. ‚ÄúNormally one of the reasons is ride height, because even the previous generation of cars achieved a level of ground effect, but these cars rely much more on ground effect.

“So for this car it’s much more an element of ground clearance and how to manage what happens on the ground, around the ground and under the ground.”

“So for this car it’s much more an element of ground clearance and how to manage what happens on the ground, around the ground and under the ground,” he added.

For the Miami Grand Prix, McLaren opted to equip Lando Norris with the full range of upgrades, while Oscar Piastri’s MCL38 received only half of them in the form of the front wing. Despite this disparity, the team believed that effective communication between the upgraded parts would still demonstrate a clear improvement in vehicle performance.

Being a Sprint weekend with only one practice session, it will be difficult for McLaren to fully utilize its updates, so it is likely that we will see the full potential of the car not this weekend, but at the Emilia Romagna Grand Prix at The end of this month. .