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Stella concedes Monza exposed 'bad news' for McLaren

McLaren was always expected to struggle at Monza as a trait of the MCL60 was ill-suited to the track.

Stella Zandvoort
To news overview © RN365/Michael Potts

The reversal of McLaren's Formula 1 car traits at the Italian Grand Prix is "not good news", according to team boss Andrea Stella.

Heading to Monza, McLaren was expected to struggle owing to the low downforce package of the MCL60 being comparatively weak, as was seen during the Belgian Grand Prix weekend.

Both Lando Norris and Oscar Piastri were on the fringes of the top 10 throughout the weekend, with Norris taking eighth place having been unable to find a way past the slippery Williams of Alexander Albon.

This straight-line speed deficit is a worry for McLaren, with the 2021 car - driven to victory and second by Daniel Ricciardo and Norris - a capable weapon in a straight line.

The fact that there has been a flip in McLaren's strengths is a concern for Stella.

'Not good news'

"It is not good news," Stella told media including RacingNews365 of the turnaround of the traits of the car.

"The car was very quick here in 2021, and that car had an underlying level of frag which was quite low.

"Off-loading the car, and I mean off-loading by reducing the level of the rear-wing, the floor could still retain a decent level of downforce, so it is more discernments that make the difference to how you perform at Monza, rather than driveability, balance and so on.

"It just depends how much downforce your car retains as you take off more rear-wing.

"This depends much more on the aerodynamic concept of the car, and how you achieve what you want to achieve at medium and high downforce [tracks] and so on.

"Balance-wise, the comments we had in 2021 keep being similar to the comments we have now, but in 2021, relative to the competition, our car was very efficient."


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