2 NOVEMBER 30 2011 motorsport-news.co.uk
IN THIS ISSUE
THE VOICE OF BRITISH MOTORSPORT ISSUE JA2798
MOTORSPORT BRITISH OF VOICE THE
“We want want “We want “We to offer the ultimate experience”
offer to offer to ultimate the ultimate the experience” experience”
P8 Sky unveils a dedicated channel for F1 coverage coverage F1 for channel dedicated a unveils Sky
MG GIVES GREEN
LIGHT TO BTCC
Famous British make on verge of tin-top campaign
OGIER COULD COMPETE WITH VW NEXT SEASON
New Polo WRC could debut earlier than expected
YOUR COMPLETE GUIDE TO THE
ROGER ALBERT CLARK
All the best cars and crews are in our full preview
Brazilian Grand Prix report
SUBSCRIBETOMOTORSPORTNEWS 14 Historic race and rally news 17 Insight:Nissan GT Academy 23 Preview:Roger Albert Clark Rally 24 Insight:How to build a rally car 28 Racing reports 31 Rally reports 31 Sporting Scene round-up 32 Champions:Julian Godfrey 33 Karting round-up 34 Profile:Alex Albon 35 Letters/Comment/What’s On 36 Classified 38 Wanted:An F1 race seat.Any one will do,fast,slow,even a Marussia.Apply:R Barrichello,Brazil.
FORMOTORSPORT NEWS STAFF CONTACT DETAILS PLEASE SEE P37
Classified advertising: 0208 267 5355
British team promises to ramp up its ByRob Ladbrook McLaren’s Martin Whitmarsh has promised that his team will learn from its mistakes this year and come back ready to challenge Formula One dominator Red Bull in 2012. McLaren driver Jenson Button cemented second place in the drivers’ world championship with a third place finish in Brazil last weekend. The team has also wrapped up second place in the constructors’ points.
Button’s podium capped a difficult season for the Woking team, which has lagged behind Red Bull and its figurehead Sebastian Vettel for much of the season following a torrid start to the year. Whitmarsh said second place for the team isn’t enough and promised a bigger push for next year.
“By the standards of McLaren, this has not been a vintage year,” Whitmarsh said. “Clearly, wewant to winmore races than this. Wehad a slow start to the year and it hurt us. Wehave to get out of the blocks quickly and effectively at the start of next year and be in a position to win races straight away. We look forward to turning the tables on Red Bull in 2012.”
McLaren’s problems McLaren’s biggest hurdle this year was overcoming the aerodynamic inefficiencies that hampered its MP4-26 challenger.
The team struggled to match the pace of Red Bull Racing during preseason testing and lacked development time to correct the issues prior to the opening race in Australia back in March. Whitmarsh has laid the majority of the blame on the team’s experimental ‘Octopus’ exhaust system, which it developed in an effort to generate more downforce exploiting the controversial blown diffuser regulations. The failed concept prompted a redesign of the car’s floor and exhaust system. The resulting lack of development helped Vettel cruise to five wins from the opening six grands prix.
“We had a disastrous winter and were seconds off the pace on our first long runs,” Whitmarsh said. “Though we understood that there was a blown-exhaust phenomenon to take advantage of, our concept was too ambiguous and complex to exploit it. It consumed a lot of our development and design effort to rectify.
“Normally you push development work during the winter, but if you use that time to rectify something that waswrong it is difficult to recover. Wehad a shocking time. We were nowhere near competitive and had not done a race distance run before we finished the Australian GP. That is noway to start a season. We have taken some decisions onwhat happened this year and hopefully we have learned from that.”
Button also acknowledges that the
Button finished second in the points - just like McLaren did team’s early season mistakes set them back. He added: “The exhaust system we tried wasmassively different to what everybody else had and perhaps we put too much faith in one component of the car. Wedefinitely won’t have another winter like that, we’ve learned from that mistake. This time wewill be ready for the first race.”
Development fight Focus towards the development of McLaren’s 2012 challenger is already underway. Button and fellow Briton Lewis Hamilton are confirmed at the team for 2012, which gives McLaren a solid base onwhich to create a car tailored to both drivers. McLaren’s managing director Jonathan Neale believes that stability is key and the team will be more than capable of fighting Red Bull for the 2012 title. “We’ve shown that we can out-develop and stay close to any team on the grid,” he said. “We have consistently won races and we’re consistently on the podium but we need more titles – that’s a frustration for us.
“We have to have a car the drivers feel comfortable in, that also has bulletproof reliability. Lewis and Jenson are back-to-back world champions and deserve the best.”
The team’s efforts to close the gap to its rivals this year have drawn praise from triple world champion Niki Lauda, who has tipped McLaren as a challenger next year. “After its bad start McLaren was the only team to catch Red Bull,” exMcLaren driver Lauda told German broadcasterRTL. “Next year they
Button wants pace fr om the star t