James Key has revealed that McLaren had the intention of making the 2022 challenger more balanced in order to perform well at all tracks.

McLaren’s MCL35M car was among the quickest on the grid in 2021 with 4 podiums, including Daniel Ricciardo’s Italian GP victory. However, it lacked performance in low-speed sections, which affected their results at some tracks.

Key admitted that they were working on making the new car more balanced.

“We did pay a lot of attention to drag on the 2020 car, and as we did for the ’19 car, that was a bit before my time, but I know that was a priority for that car and it all carried through,” the McLaren technical director said.

“Efficiency is good. I think what we’ve seen with straight-line braking, which is one of our strengths, and high-speed corners reflects the sort of performance we can generate with the nature of the car we have.

“What we’re missing is – we did work on this for 2020 and ’21 – try and generate that performance in low-speed. We know why we’re not quite there yet.

“The car isn’t quite as robust as it is in high-speed in the low-speed corners. A lot of the work that went into the ’21 car was to specifically try and address some of these problems.

“Unfortunately, it isn’t just a silver bullet where we switch it on and suddenly it’s great. It takes a while to get them to work. That’s why we knew Zandvoort would be difficult. Equally how we kind of knew that Monza would be strong.”

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