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ABU DHABI, UNITED ARAB EMIRATES - NOVEMBER 26: Lando Norris of Great Britain and McLaren walks in the paddock during the F1 Grand Prix of Abu Dhabi at Yas Marina Circuit on November 26, 2023 in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates.

Norris reveals why McLaren are hiding aero details with MCL38

The Woking team revealed its MCL38 on Wednesday at Silverstone and fired the MCL38 up to go around the iconic British track

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Lando Norris explains that his McLaren Formula 1 team are unwilling to show much of the MCL38’s aero details as the sport is a “game of performance”.

McLaren, MCL38, Lando Norris, Oscar Piastri
MCL38 (Image Credit: @formularacers_ on X)

The Woking team revealed its 2024 challenger at Silverstone on Wednesday. However, only pictures were released as the reveal, disguising the team’s work that had been done over the winter.

McLaren had a successful 2023 season after starting the year the worst way possible. Despite a poor start, the Woking team were able to develop the MCL60 to become regular podium challengers and Red Bull’s closest rival.

The British team finished the 2023 season in fourth, overtaking Aston Martin, who had the opposite story to McLaren in 2023. The Silverstone team started off brilliantly, but would tail off as the season progress due to the development side going wrong.

Why keep the aero details secret?

Formula 1 is full of innovated ideas, making the sport unique. A design philosophy could be the difference from a regular midfield team to a championship contending team. Therefore, teams like to keep its ideas secret to gets as much as a potential competitive advantage as possible.

This is what Norris was alluding to when asked about the team keeping its aero parts secret. The 24-year-old said:

“Because we can! Because it’s a game of performance, and why would you ever want to give away anything? So you see what the car looks like. But you’ll see in two weeks or something the rest. So, be patient.”

Norris and his teammate Oscar Piastri would drive the MCL38 around Silverstone after the pictures were released. However, Red Bull did the opposite of running its RB20 around Silverstone before releasing pictures of the car.

Piastri referenced this after Norris was asked about the reasoning for hiding intricate details about the car.

“I mean, at least we showed our car before it went on track, unlike others!”

F1, McLaren, MCL38, Lando Norris, Oscar Piastri
Mclaren hope to close the gap to Red Bull (Image Credit: @F1 on X)
Trying something different

McLaren’s 2023 car reveal had a lot of media presence. This was partly due to it celebrating 60 years since Bruce McLaren founded the team in 1963.

However, Stella said that the simple reasoning of not having strong media presence in 2024 was simply to try something different.

“We have seen recently that teams decided to have some style to launch the car like we had last year,” he said. “Where there was a show, or it was launched at the theatre, at MTC, live streaming.

“But we also see that sometimes you may want to have just a lower profile in launching your car. So, I guess also, these approaches can be alternated over time. And we went from last year’s glamorous one to this year, which is low-profile.

“This is not only technical, or operational aspects, this is also marketing and commercial. So you know, Formula 1 is a large business, is not only technical, like I say, and we need to take into account all these requirements and variety of approaches.”

The team will be hoping to edge clsoe to Red Bull in 2024, especially now with its new wind tunnel. The team now believes that there are no excuses to not challenge for race wins.

feature Image Credit: Kym Illman via Getty Images

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