McLaren team principal Andreas Seidl took a gentle dig at his opposite number at Red Bull, Christian Horner, for his ongoing complaints about the impact of damage on Formula 1 teams in the cost cap era following the expensive Hungarian Grand Prix.
Horner announced the cost of Max Verstappen’s crash at Silverstone as $1.8 million and was then further annoyed by the repair bill from the race in Budapest, when both Red Bulls were damaged after Valtteri Bottas’ error at Turn 1. Both McLarens also took big hits — Lando Norris was forced to retire after contact with Bottas and Verstappen, while Daniel Ricciardo was caught in a separate crash with Lance Stroll and Charles Leclerc — but Seidl said that dealing with the extra cost when there are budget restrictions is simply part of F1.
“No (it doesn’t need addressing), not at all,” Seidl said. “I definitely will not go in the direction that Christian is going, mentioning every second sentence the cost cap and how much it will be hurt by it by an accident on track. In the end, it’s part of the game we’re in. It’s down to us to manage the budget in the right way.
“It will be a challenge to make sure now we have enough parts of the new specification available for Spa, but on the other hand, we have a great team back home in production and the engineering side, so I am confident we can recover from what happened.
“I don’t see that it affects anything of our plans, to be honest. It is quite simple and straightforward. At the beginning of the season, based on the experience of previous years, you simply have to account for certain crash damage per year. That’s what you have to figure in, and that’s what we have in the budget and that’s the challenge that we are in. It’s the same for everyone.”
While the Turn 1 chaos opened up an opportunity for a shock winner in the form of Esteban Ocon, Seidl says McLaren won’t rue a missed opportunity given both drivers were blameless in their two incidents.
“It’s just disappointing but at the same time you can’t do anything about it. That disappointment doesn’t bring you anything. We just have to accept it, that these things can happen. We know that we have a strong car, we know we have a strong team and we have two strong drivers. With this combination we have everything in our hands to have a good second half of the season — that is what we are focusing on.
“On Daniel’s car, I think the front wing was damaged, then the barge boards — the new ones got damaged heavily and the floor on the side front of the rear wheels on the right-hand side was damaged as well. So huge loss — probably seven, eight tenths a lap plus obviously the consequences it has then on the stint.”