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McLaren set for boost in Ferrari F1 fight with Hungarian GP upgrades

By:Luke Smith
Co-author:Haydn Cobb
Jul 21, 2021
McLaren is set for a boost in its fight against Ferrari for third in the Formula 1 constructors’ championship by bringing some upgrades to the next race in Hungary.
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McLaren is aiming to repeat its feat of finishing third in the teams’ standings from last year, but faces stern competition in the form of Ferrari.

Charles Leclerc’s charge to second place in the British Grand Prix helped Ferrari cut the gap to McLaren in the championship down to 15 points, having come within three laps of winning the grand prix.

Leclerc ultimately crossed the line 25 seconds clear of leading McLaren driver Lando Norris, who took fourth ahead of team-mate Daniel Ricciardo.

It marked a big turnaround in Ferrari’s form after both Leclerc and team-mate Carlos Sainz Jr had struggled with tyre management in France last month, breathing added life into the scrap for third.

But McLaren F1 chief Andreas Seidl revealed after the race that the team is planning to bring some new parts for its MCL35M car to next weekend’s Hungarian Grand Prix in Budapest, boosting its hopes.

“We are bringing some upgrades to Hungary for our car in order to make sure we keep this battle up,” said Seidl.

“It is great for us that we are in P3 in the constructors’ championship, and after 10 races, 163 points is again a big step forward for us compared to last year.

“So I am very happy for that.”

At the same point last year, McLaren had scored 106 points and one fewer podium than it has picked up so far in 2021.
The upswing in form has come against increased competition in the fight for third through a stronger Ferrari squad, which is recovering from its worst season in 40 years in 2020.

Seidl said that he was “not surprised” by Ferrari’s performance at Silverstone, nor the progress that it has appeared to make across the campaign so far.

“I am also not surprised by the steps they can make in a season, as it is a strong team with two strong drivers,” Seidl said.

“They also have all of the resources that they need in order to react to problems. They have the team with the experience to react to the problems so it is not a surprise.

“It will be a very tough battle until the end of the season."
The worrying thing is that Ferrari could evade the cost cap and, unlike the other teams, pour excessive resources into developing this year's car without compromising its expenditure on next year's car. By doing that they could snatch 3rd place from McLaren.

One cannot be certain that they will cheat in that way but, if we are to go by decades of experience, the guys most likely to break the rules are the ones who wear red underpants.
 

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The worrying thing is that Ferrari could evade the cost cap and, unlike the other teams, pour excessive resources into developing this year's car without compromising its expenditure on next year's car. By doing that they could snatch 3rd place from McLaren.

One cannot be certain that they will cheat in that way but, if we are to go by decades of experience, the guys most likely to break the rules are the ones who wear red underpants.
Speaking of which, they found a surprising amount of speed from somewhere last weekend.
 

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Interesting that both Alonso and LeClerc, both of whom race against Verstappen, and neither of which have any allegiance to Mercedes, both correctly concluded that it was a racing incident.
That's helpful. They are reliable observers who - at least on the surface - have no axe to grind.
I would say that Leclerc has had more than his fair share of altercations with Verstappen, and of course Alonso always has had several hidden agendas going on at any time, but at least they have no blatant conflict of interest to distort their views.

The problem is that what constitutes a 'racing incident' changed two weeks ago in Austria, when the Derek Warwick-led stewards decided to break precedent and hand out three time penalties and three sets of penalty points for manoeuvres that previously were allowed.
Having in the previous race come down so hard on essentially benign actions, at Silverstone the stewards couldn't ignore the Hamilton incident. Especially as the stands were filled with a hundred thousand Hamilton fans baying like wild dogs, if the FIA had failed to penalise Hamilton at all they would have been seen as being disgracefully hypocritical.
Whether, if the British GP had taken place before the Austrian GP, it should have been considered a racing incident' is an interesting but unfortunately moot question. The precedent set in Austria changed everything.
 

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Discussion Starter · #208 ·
The worrying thing is that Ferrari could evade the cost cap and, unlike the other teams, pour excessive resources into developing this year's car without compromising its expenditure on next year's car. By doing that they could snatch 3rd place from McLaren.

One cannot be certain that they will cheat in that way but, if we are to go by decades of experience, the guys most likely to break the rules are the ones who wear red underpants.
Yes cost cap ‘work arounds’ may become difficult to check. The move to aero simulation software running on high speed computers is now making wind tunnels obsolete. Concerned that McLaren may have invested in a wind tunnel instead of simulators …
Also it is interesting to see more drivers spending time on track simulators to prepare for the race and to develop the car and chassis. What portion of these simulator development costs will be attributed to F1 development costs caps vs ‘normal’ road car business? Guess that Mercedes are ahead of the rest …. again.
 

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Yes cost cap ‘work arounds’ may become difficult to check. The move to aero simulation software running on high speed computers is now making wind tunnels obsolete. Concerned that McLaren may have invested in a wind tunnel instead of simulators …
Also it is interesting to see more drivers spending time on track simulators to prepare for the race and to develop the car and chassis. What portion of these simulator development costs will be attributed to F1 development costs caps vs ‘normal’ road car business? Guess that Mercedes are ahead of the rest …. again.
Only thing is that there are caps on the amount of computing capacity that may be employed per season. That has been the case for several years.
 

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Discussion Starter · #213 ·
Allison reveals what Mercedes were so keen to show FIA stewards in aftermath of Hamilton-Verstappen crash
 

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Discussion Starter · #215 ·
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Discussion Starter · #219 ·
RACEFANS
2021 Hungarian Grand Prix grid

2021 Hungarian Grand Prix
Posted on
31st July 2021, 15:11 | Written by Keith Collantine

Lewis Hamilton leads the provisional grid for the 2021 Hungarian Grand Prix.
Row 11. Lewis Hamilton 1’15.419
Mercedes
2. Valtteri Bottas 1’15.734
Mercedes
Row 23. Max Verstappen 1’15.840
Red Bull
4. Sergio Perez 1’16.421
Red Bull
Row 35. Pierre Gasly 1’16.483
AlphaTauri
6. Lando Norris 1’16.489
McLaren
Row 47. Charles Leclerc 1’16.496
Ferrari
8. Esteban Ocon 1’16.653
Alpine
Row 59. Fernando Alonso 1’16.715
Alpine
10. Sebastian Vettel 1’16.750
Aston Martin
Row 611. Daniel Ricciardo 1’16.871
McLaren
12. Lance Stroll 1’16.893
Aston Martin
Row 713. Kimi Raikkonen 1’17.564
Alfa Romeo
14. Antonio Giovinazzi 1’17.583
Alfa Romeo
Row 815. Carlos Sainz Jnr No time
Ferrari
16. Yuki Tsunoda 1’17.919
AlphaTauri
Row 917. George Russell 1’17.944
Williams
18. Nicholas Latifi 1’18.036
Williams
Row 1019. Nikita Mazepin 1’18.922
Haas
20. **** Schumacher No time
Haas
 
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