‘More to come’ from revised McLaren (British GP practice interactive data)

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McLaren have a lot of work to do to get the most out of their new exhaust package at Silverstone this weekend.

Having ended second practice 1.5 seconds off Red Bull, Lewis Hamilton admitted: “We haven’t got the optimum out of the car yet, there’s still more to come."

See below for the interactive data from the first two practice sessions at Silverstone.

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Tick/untick drivers’ names to show their laps, click and drag to zoom

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Tick/untick drivers’ names to show their laps, click and drag to zoom

As usual, the two MP4-25s were the quickest cars in a straight line – although their advantage was less than 1kph.

Lewis Hamilton struggled to put a clean lap in during the second session, going off track on several occasions. But even combining his three best sectors only cuts the gap to Red Bull’s ‘ultimate lap’ by one tenth of a second.

However Hamilton doesn’t think the situation is as serious as it was in Barcelona:

We spent both sessions running with the new components. I definitely feel we’ve made a step forward from the last race. This circuit is a bit like Barcelona, where we were one second behind Red Bull – I don’t think we’ll be seeing that sort of gap tomorrow though, hopefully.
Lewis Hamilton

The McLarens appear to be least competitive through the final sector – Jenson Button was only 15th quickest there in second practice.

The closest challengers to Red Bull so far this weekend are Ferrari – Fernando Alonso was quickest of all through the first sector and his ‘ultimate lap’ was 0.28 seconds faster than Sebastian Vettel’s.

However Alonso expects McLaren to be at or near their pace on Saturday and Sunday:

I expected to be competitive because our car is much better than it was at the Turkish Grand Prix, which was the last time we raced at a track with similar characteristics to this one.

As expected, Red Bull is very strong and therefore the big favourite for tomorrow’s qualifying and behind them, we will fight it out with McLaren, Renault and maybe also Mercedes: nothing different there to Valencia. At this track, you need a car with a lot of aerodynamic downforce and slightly different suspension settings to usual.

The new components introduced in Valencia and those brought here have improved the handling of the F10: we must continue to push on the car development front at each and every race.
Fernando Alonso

At the other end of the grid HRT will be relieved the 107% rule isn’t in force this year.

Sakon Yamamoto, who they’ve replaced Bruno Senna with for this race, was more than 7% slower than Webber’s best time in second practice. Team mate Karun Chandhok was inside the 107% time by 0.6 seconds, Yamamoto missed it by 0.7 seconds.

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    19 comments on “‘More to come’ from revised McLaren (British GP practice interactive data)”

    1. BreezyRacer
      9th July 2010, 19:40

      If you look at the lap times in P2 RB has a good 7-8 tenths on the best McLaren have shown. more importantly the McLaren’s seem to be pretty lose in fast corners, just the opposite of what would expect IF the blown diffuser was an improvement.

      I would not be surprised to see McLaren stay with the revisions but wind up in the mid field of the Q3 bunch. Last prediction .. Hamilton will put it in the grass in Q3.

      1. miguelF1O (@)
        9th July 2010, 19:55

        thats a bit pessimist i agree with alonso the track is similar to turkish were mclaren were impressive although not faster than the red bull maybe its just a setting problem like the begining of the season were they were a bit behind the ferrari

    2. I think McLaren was pretty much testing everything and not going for times. Renault and both Williams look pretty good here and i expect Ferrari to be pretty close to Red Bull this time round.

    3. Well, i think MP4-25 will be more than we see. My bet is that Hamilton will smash Weber’s best time on Q3.

      1. “smash”? doubt it…

    4. Silverstone is no place to fiddle with new parts esp for a team like MC. What will they do if their drivers cannot get the best out of this new designs?

      When you change the back, you also need to change the front wings, so its just too much.

      1. miguelF1O (@)
        10th July 2010, 1:40

        theres no other way out they cant test it would take some days to get it really going straight line tests are not enough i think it is the right mesure if they want to win this year they have taken all chances from redbulll hands as said by david croft theyve made in this last rounds almost perfect score the luck is not everlassting so they need to evolve if it works they could do what redbull wasnt capable last year to come from behind and snatch the title

    5. These charts are brilliant.
      It is interesting how little long-runs were done—more than 3-4 laps. McLaren did none. It seems there is a lot of testing going on.

      Hamilton was actually faster in FP1 and second fastest in that session—when the track was much much dirtier—so it’s clear that VMM in no way showed their hand in FP2. The offs had to do with bottoming, apparently, which afflicted a number of drivers, rather than the car being loose. Both drivers reported the handling to be good, but that set up changes for FP2 were ineffective. Note also the significant top speed advantage to RedBull, which, as in Canada, they may be able to harvest for lap time.

      RBR are their usual selves, and they are the ones typically sandbagging.

      Ferrari showed the same characteristic in Valencia and we must wait to see what their soft tire/ low fuel pace is. Race pace is of little moment if you start the race in the peleton.

      I wish Keith would let us, or at least me, do predictions after FP3 because it now its only guessing.

      1. I don’t think RBR particularly sandbag as such, but their extra tenths in qualifying seem to come from running an engine setting that puts out more exhaust gas when it normally wouldn’t. The blown diffuser only provides extra downforce when the exhaust gases are flowing, which is not typically in corners where it’s needed (throttle is low/off), so this engine mapping is a way of abusing the engine to supply this extra exhaust gases and hence more downforce in the corners.

        This setting isn’t good for the engine however, so RBR are never going to run it for more than the 2 or 3 laps in Q3 that they need to.

    6. Just read that McLaren have abandoned the blown diffuser for this weekend so this is a huge disappointment. I don’t think they have much chance this weekend especially of beating the Red Bulls.


    7. bad_whippet
      9th July 2010, 23:10

      Autosport have this up on their site… looks like today’s testing didn’t go so well for Mclaren – they’re abandoning the blown diffuser for Silverstone. Shame.


      1. bad_whippet
        9th July 2010, 23:12

        Sorry, this is the correct link…


      2. The sensible decision, I’m pleased about this.

        It was clear the car had an extremely lively rear end (not just to do with the ride height over the bumps), and as they were only 1kph quicker than the next best on the straights, it had nothing to do with running less rear wing.

        Bag the podium points here, let the Red Bulls take what is rightfully theirs and get the package ready for Germany!

      3. Keith,

        Can you confirm this?

    8. STRFerrari4Ever
      9th July 2010, 23:58

      McLaren have dropped their blown diffuser for the rest of the weekend. They’ve decided to switch back to their previous setup.

    9. Interesting choice. Going P2 in a session does not reflect going backwards. It must mean they are confident in the existing design and that there are installation, rather than design issues, with the new arrangement. Whitmarsh must also be thinking, we lead the WCC by a race’s worth of points, so why risk it by having a double DNF. RBR will breathe a sigh of relief; Newey must have made an unusually satisfied notation in his little notebook.

    10. so if they have to ditch the bd how they plan to do the ” more to come from revised mclaren’? or hami as always is using his ass instead of his mouth when he talks

    11. looking at the practice session i felt that… teams which have struggled to bring strong updates are Mclaren, Mercedes, Force India & Sauber…

      Red Bull & Ferrari are looking good, Renault looks okay.. Williams seem to have decent pakage as well…

      Lotus is getting closer to toro rosso…

      virgin & HRT are still not fast enough to challenge lotus…

    12. FERRARI WILL TAKE pole and win this week end

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