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Oscar Piastri

McLaren explain 'acceleration' in Piastri F1 development

Oscar Piastri trails McLaren team-mate Lando Norris by 50 points but there are clear signs of progress. Read more

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Andrea Stella believes Oscar Piastri is displaying "an acceleration in his development" after McLaren started work on what the team principal has described as "a couple of opportunities".

Piastri is currently in his second season with McLaren, and although delivering a superb drive to finish runner-up in the Monaco Grand Prix, that is the only time the Australian has finished on the podium this year.

In contrast, team-mate Lando Norris has racked up five podiums, including scoring his maiden F1 victory by taking the chequered flag in the Miami Grand Prix, to place himself third in the drivers' standings, seven behind Ferrari's Charles Leclerc, and 63 adrift of Max Verstappen in his Red Bull.

Piastri, meanwhile, is sixth, 50 points behind Norris. Despite the gap, Stella is in no doubt the 23-year-old has taken a step forward in recent races.

"After China, we looked at what we had learned in the first part of the season, together with Oscar's engineers, and we found a couple of opportunities that we started to work on," said Stella.

"And I have to say that they seem to be delivering an acceleration in Oscar's development.

"There's always underlying development, but in this case, both in terms of pure speed, which you can see in qualifying, and in terms of race craft, we have seen Oscar competing at a very high level."

Asked as to what was specifically discovered in China that propelled Piastri's development forward, Stella said: 'That was a race in which tyre degradation and managing tyre degradation was important.

"We reviewed what was the objective entering the race in terms of managing tyres, how we executed, how we interacted with the driver during the race, and what should have been the contribution of the engineers, what should have been the realisation of the drivers.

"Those are the kind of things you review, and in all those aspects, we found ways of doing a better job altogether.

"That's the kind of conversations you have with a driver to then try and move on, not only the driver, but also the engineering support."

Additionally recognising the fact Piastri is in his second season in F1, and is becoming more familiar with the circuits, Stella added: "Coming back to the same track is definitely important.

"There's a sense of familiarity. There's historical data. There are a lot of things that you review after year one.

"But in addition to that, it's also that you have more races that you do in Formula 1, more races to work with your engineers, more races to just understand what you need to work on.

"So it's not only the fact that you come to the same track for the second time, it's just the overall journey of development, which I have to say for Oscar is quite impressive."

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