McLaren has increased from 30 points in 2017 to 62 in 2018, 145 in 2019, 202 in 2020 and most recently 275 points in 2021. The expansion of the technical infrastructure, with which one would like to challenge the top teams in the medium term from the current P4, is not yet complete.
However, the new wind tunnel, a core of the measures that Andreas Seidl requested from the shareholders when he took office in January 2019, should be completed this year. The McLaren team boss confirmed this in an interview with editor-in-chief Christian Nimmervoll on the YouTube channel “Formel1.de”.
“In terms of infrastructure, we are absolutely on course,” assures Seidl. “Our wind tunnel is in the middle of construction, with the aim of completion at the end of 2022 – so that we will then approach the development of the vehicle step by step over the course of the 2023 season.”
However, it is “clear” that a development tool such as a wind tunnel will not have an immediate impact on the car’s performance. Looking at the timeline, Seidl assumes that the 2024 McLaren will be the first car “which is really developed in the new wind tunnel in Woking”.
McLaren wants to be on par with the top teams
As further infrastructure measures that are taking place behind the scenes at McLaren’s headquarters in Woking, Seidl mentions in the interview that was first published in January the construction of the new driving simulator, which is to be completed “in the middle of next year” (i.e. not until 2023), and the renewal further parts of the “machine park that we use to manufacture our parts”.
The aim is to come “on an equal footing” with Ferrari, Mercedes and Red Bull in terms of infrastructure. According to Seidl, the measures currently being implemented – CFD resources were expanded and updated as early as 2021 – are an absolute “prerequisite”. Nevertheless, he knows: “We have to be patient. The big issues in particular need time.”