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Oscar Piastri

Piastri signals where McLaren must focus ahead of Australia qualifying

The Melbourne native ended the second practice session seventh, just ahead of team-mate Lando Norris.

Piastri Australia
To news overview © XPBimages

Oscar Piastri is seeking more consistency from his McLaren in Australian Grand Prix qualifying, after a tight practice in Melbourne.

Competing in his home race for the second time, Piastri finished the second practice session in seventh to follow on from 10th in the opening 60 minutes of practice.

Team-mate Lando Norris, who topped Free Practice 1 with the top five separated by less than a tenth felt the team would not be able to replicate that form going into qualifying, with Piastri echoing those thoughts.

The Albert Park circuit is tricky for McLaren with Sectors 1 and 2 playing to its high-speed corner strength, before the slow, tight corners in Sector 3 expose the long-standing weakness in the car, with Piastri believing consistency in the car will be the difference between starting near the front or back of the top 10.

"It has been a bit tricky, we've seemed very strong at some points and not as strong at others, so it is going to be interesting to see where we come out," Piastri explained.

"There are definitely some positive signs from today, and we've just got to try and get it all together, which I think everybody is struggling with due to the wind.

"I would say [Norris and I are] pretty similar [on set-up], we never go too far apart, and we were trying a couple of different things between us, but that is pretty standard.

"We'll see what was best overnight and put it on for tomorrow.

"[The short run pace] looks very tight, as it has this year so even if we're a little bit quicker, we'll be right at the front, and if we are how we were towards the end of FP2, we'll be towards the back of the top 10.

"That's where we've been for the last two rounds, so hopefully we can make the car a little bit more consistent.

"Some teams have got some interesting tyre choices still open, and tyre wear looks very high, so it is going to be an interesting Sunday for sure, but qualifying at the front always makes life easier, so we'll put a lot of work into that."

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