Mistake made McLaren look quicker in Jerez


16 March 2013 by TF1T Staff

McLaren have admitted that a small mistake during pre-season testing made them look quicker than they actually are.

The outfit impressed on the first day of testing in Jerez when Jenson Button posted the fastest lap on hard tyres, leading to Ferrari's Felipe Massa describing the 2009 champion's lap as "incredible."

That led to some in the paddock believing McLaren were the team to beat. However their pace on the following days and tests wasn't as impressive.

Team principal Martin Whitmarsh has now revealed that a part of the cars suspension had been fitted incorrectly in Jerez on day one and led to the car running much lower than normal - that setup happened to play to the cars strengths around the smooth Jerez circuit.

"It was a part fitted incorrectly which caused us to run the car unrealistically low, that happened to play to the strengths of the car," he told AdamCooperF1.

Whitmarsh explained that recreating those conditions simply wouldn't work around circuits like Albert Park which demands a higher ride-height due to its uneven surface.

"It wouldn’t work on a bumpy circuit like this," he added. "That's why the car at the moment is too peaky in its performance, and that’s something we've got to resolve. It was a set-up which on many tracks was not realistic."