Stella: New technical hires quite refreshing

Stella: New technical hires quite refreshing

Stella: New technical hires quite refreshing

Andrea Stella, McLaren’s Team Principal, shed some light on the effect new technical hires Rob Marshall and David Sanchez have had on the team.

McLaren have gone through quite some changes during the 2023 Formula 1 season, Andreas Seidl leaving to Sauber aka Audi aka Stake, with Stella taking over his role.

On the technical front, James Key was ousted from his Technical Director role and joined Seidl now leading the Hinwil-based F1 operation.


Under Stella’s watch, McLaren have improved by leaps and bounds after a mid-2023 upgrade to the car saw them finish the season with the second fastest car behind Red Bull.

They have also been busy recruiting, and were able to attract two senior technical figures from Red Bull and Ferrari.

Marshall joined from Red Bull as the Technical Director, Engineering and Design, while Sanchez left Ferrari and took on the role of Technical Director, Car Concept and Performance.

Stella is satisfied by the way Marshall and Sanchez integrated themselves within the team, lauding their approach of respecting the existing and trying to improve on it.

Quoted by, Stella pointed out the added value Marshall and Sanchez brought: “They’ve been part of great teams, great projects, and the good thing is that this knowledge, I think we see that it integrates with what we knew and with our know-how.

Plenty of work to go through

“So it’s not like, ‘Oh we should do things in this way, which is opposite to what you do.’ Instead, it’s ‘we can do things in this way, which adds a little bit to what you do.’ This was quite refreshing in a way.

“We also had the possibility to appreciate their personal approach, which I think has engaged people in fascinating technical conversations.

“We see the momentum, the energy, the ideas, the flow through the organization,” the Italian added.

And while Mrashall and Sanchez will have limited input into McLaren’s 2024 F1 car, the MCL38, which will be launched on February 14, their input will be more towards 2025, and more importantly 2026, when the new regulations make their debut.

Stella revealed: “We have a 2024 car, and we are already setting the basis for how we evolve the ‘24 into the ‘25. And then there’s a 2026 project with completely new technical regulations.

“So there’s so much work that we need to go through, and it is very important to now have these high calibres leading their respective technical areas.

“This means that we have the capacity, the capability, and the competence to approach these three big projects with the horsepower required to compete at the top of Formula 1,” Stella concluded.

McLaren finished the 2023 F1 season fourth in the Constructors’ Championship with 302 points. Lando Norris and Oscar Piastri carry over as drivers.