Andreas Seidl disagrees the fact that McLaren is deliberately downplaying its pace, as he clarifies that they are being realistic about its chances in 2021 F1 season.

It is safe to say that McLaren has surpassed all expectations this 2021 F1 season. The team continues to score in the top positions, and the drivers seem happy with the car, especially Lando Norris, as Daniel Ricciardo is still getting to grips with the new car he is driving.

The recent boom in success, most notably Norris’s recent P5 and P3 finish in the two Austrian racers, raised hopes of a further top-end results, results the team may not be ready to achieve just now, as per McLaren team principal Seidl.

With the gap to Mercedes and Red Bull, Seidl is trying to be realistic in the wake of the recent success. When asked if McLaren is deliberately downplaying their pace with the target portrayal of a fifth or sixth place finishes, thereby putting low expectations with higher results, he stated that the team needed to be realistic with their pace.

“There’s no point to see things that aren’t there,” said Seidl to media including “You need to be realistic and if you see the race for example first Austria weekend and McLaren are here at the same track one weekend later, then we had no chance to battle these four cars. There was a huge gap.

“So, we knew that we would have a better car compared to first weekend, but we couldn’t expect that we could actually fight them like that. At the same time, we don’t know which problems they experienced. Especially Mercedes. So, you know exactly where we stand as a team. We know what the deficit is.

“We know what the deficit also still is at the team’s side in terms of infrastructure and so on. So, it’s not a surprise that we are where we are. We are on a journey. We have a clear plan of how we want to reduce this deficit. That takes some years. But the good thing is we make steps. We’re ambitious, but there is no magic.

“And I simply think it’s always good to have a sense of realism, not get carried away with results like today, which are great and give good energy to the team. But it doesn’t change the picture, the realistic picture we have in terms of where we are,” summed up Seidl, as McLaren sits third with 141 points against their immediate rival Ferrari, with 122.

Looking at the progress from 2020 to 2021, after nine races last year, McLaren scored 105 points, which is 36 less than this season. If the team can continue to score top results, the future is bright for the team in orange. That being said, nothing is certain yet, and it is still early into the season.

The article was written by Neeladri Nag

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