Forgot Password

 

Register

 

Create your Connect ID

This will allow you to login to all DStv websites & applications




or
Login using
x

Email Reset

 




Loading...
Loading Live Scoring...
*All times CAT (GMT+2)

Motorsport | Formula 1

Eric Boullier © Gallo Images

McLaren aim to catch Mercedes by Barcelona



McLaren have an aggressive programme of development for their car and aim to close the gap with Mercedes by the first European race of the Formula One season in May, Racing Director Eric Boullier said on Wednesday.

Danish rookie Kevin Magnussen and Britain's Jenson Button finished second and third in last Sunday's season-opener in Melbourne that was won comfortably by Mercedes' German Nico Rosberg.

Button said Mercedes were about a second a lap quicker than the rest but Boullier, who joined the team this year from Lotus, felt the gap was less.

"It's true that Mercedes and Williams have some pace, maybe between half and three quarters of a second quicker than the rest of the field," the Frenchman told reporters.

"We focused a lot of our winter on building a solid and reliable car, because we believed - and Australia confirmed our strategy - that reliability was key to taking big points at the beginning of the season.

"Now... we are pushing very aggressively on performance development - we need to clearly catch up the gap to Mercedes and also some others... our target is to catch up by Barcelona and build up over the first few races in Europe."

The Spanish Grand Prix, fifth of 19 races this season, is on 11 May.

The podium positions in Australia were McLaren's first since 2012 with the team suffering their worst championship in decades last season.

Boullier warned that some other teams that had under-performed in Melbourne would be very fast when they resolved their problems.

Champions Red Bull had Australian Daniel Ricciardo disqualified from second place for exceeding the fuel flow rate while quadruple champion Sebastian Vettel lasted just three laps before retiring.

Red Bull's engine provider Renault had a torrid time in pre-season testing, with Red Bull arriving in Australia without having completed a race simulation.

Ferrari also recognised they had work to do after Fernando Alonso and Kimi Raikkonen finished fourth and seventh respectively.

"While we can take some satisfaction from the reliability shown by the F14T, it is clear that we have our work cut out to improve our car in order to compete on equal terms with the Mercedes team," technical director James Allison told the Ferrari website.

"We need to work further on the stability under braking and the speed on the straights... we intend to fight our way back up the grid with the improvements that we will bring to the car."

Shop

Lewis Hamilton: My story
Lewis Hamilton’s explosive arrival on the Formula 1 scene has made front-page headlines
R112.64
Psychology of motorsport success
Motorsport is a highly addictive and extremely exciting activity
R369.89


Comments

More expert analysis and opinion from Sport24
The opinions expressed by Sport24 experts and bloggers are theirs alone, and do not necessarily represent those of SuperSport

Live Video Streaming

Great Goals Of European Football - Show 1
SS4
Mon, 28 Jul @ 05:00
SS7
Mon, 28 Jul @ 06:00
Commonwealth Games H\L - Day 5 - Morning

Sports Talk



Guest Column
Fit as an F1 driver
Nico Rosberg turns around with a grin during a slight uphill section, shouting "Hey, what's the...

Reuters on Motorsport
Team prospects for the 2013 F1 season
Team-by-team prospects for the Formula One season starting in Melbourne, Australia, on March.