McLaren taking the positives from Jeddah and Bahrain

McLaren taking the positives from Jeddah and Bahrain

McLaren taking the positives from Jeddah and Bahrain

McLaren Team Principal Andrea Stella is taking the positives from his team’s first couple of races where both Lando Norris and Oscar Piastri scored points.

The Woking are enjoying a better start to their 2024 Formula 1 season compared to 2023, and while not stellar, their performance has been solid enough so far to score points in Jeddah and Bahrain.

And while Norris was the better-finishing driver in Bahrain, Piastri finished ahead in the Saudi Arabian GP finishing fourth, the former finishing eighth after taking a gamble staying out under the Safety Car, which didn’t pay off.

Stella commented on the race in Jeddah in the McLaren‘s team report, he said: “Another strong result here in Saudi Arabia.

“Oscar drove very solidly throughout the weekend and today he capitalized on the strong qualifying yesterday, finishing fourth and driving a faultless race, with some close but clean fights,” he added.

“With Lando, we decided to split the strategy as a team at the Safety Car, which could have put us in a very rewarding situation in the event of another Safety Car or a red flag, which is not infrequent here in Saudi, and so definitely worthwhile taking this opportunity,” the Italian explained.

“Unfortunately, there was no further Safety Car or a Red Flag which meant Lando potentially lost a couple of positions compared to where we could have finished. Nonetheless, it was still a strong result and very good driving by Lando.

“We take the positives from the first two races with the knowledge it will be a battle of development throughout the season. We are pleased to be so close to a podium finish and know where we have to keep working and improving the car,” Stella concluded.

Piastri: We executed the race well

Following his fourth place finish, Piastri said: “I think that’s definitely the most we could have got out of that race, and we executed it well.

“It was a bit frustrating being stuck behind Lewis Hamilton for so long, but I think that was the most amount of points we could have got this weekend, so, I’m very happy.

“I can’t wait to go to Melbourne next for my home race, I’m really looking forward to racing at my local circuit in front of the Aussie fans,” the Australian concluded.

As for Norris, who managed to fend off Lewis Hamilton towards the end of the race, the seven-time F1 Champion in similar strategy, he said: “A reasonable race.

“We tried something with strategy but, in the end, it didn’t quite pay off,” he lamented, “but it was a good effort and I think it was the right decision at the time as we were covering all options for the team.

“There was reasonable pace in the car today, so we maybe missed out on a couple of points, but I think we did what we could. We took a little bit of a gamble, sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn’t and today it didn’t, but it could have done! So, I’m still happy.

“I think today’s pace was pretty strong so there are some good signs there. On to the next one,” Norris concluded.

While Mercedes had a slight advantage over McLaren in Bahrain, the latter seemed to swing things around in Jeddah, while also outracing Aston Martin.