McLaren team principal Andreas Seidl wants to work closely with Renault to understand the reliability issues that struck at the Belgian Grand Prix.
Carlos Sainz suffered a power unit issue early in the race, failing to get off the line cleanly and then retiring at the end of the third lap during a safety car period. Lando Norris was then running a comfortable fifth but reported a loss of power at the end of the penultimate lap and crawled across the line before stopping, dropping out of the points to be classified 11th.
“It’s disappointing for us to have two DNFs, with one driver not even being able to make the race start,” Seidl said. “At the same time the situation is on Renault’s side as well. Again, Renault is making a huge effort in order to bring power updates throughout the season so that’s encouraging to see.
“Of course, it’s disappointing to have all these penalties and the DNFs in the races. But it’s important that we have a transparent and open relationship there and that we analyze the issues and try to solve them together.”
Although the latest specification of Renault power unit was taken by Sainz during Friday practice, McLaren opted against racing the upgrade, so Seidl says his concerns are not with the new engine.
“We need to wait first, I don’t think it’s related. It’s speculating and we really need to see. I don’t think it’s related to the engine spec. It was not at the end of the mileage. It was the B-Spec engine — we kept it all weekend. But it was not an issue with mileage.”
Norris is not letting the late retirement in Spa detract from the performance shown throughout the race, heading to a circuit where he has F1 experience from 2018.
“Despite the disappointment of the last race, there were a number of positives that we could take from our performance on Sunday,” Norris said. “We had stronger pace than expected during the race and I was on course for my career-best result. I’m aiming to take that performance into the next weekend and challenge for points in Monza.
“It’s a track I know quite well having taken part in FP1 and Formula 2 last year and I’ve also raced there a few times before in the junior formulae. It’s a very quick track, the quickest of the year, which means it’s also one of the most exciting circuits on the calendar.”