McLaren CEO, Zac Brown says that he does not believe that the British team will be challenging Red Bull for positions this season. Although their performance at Bahrain has given the team hope, Brown remains cautious about the remainder of the season.
McLaren has been boosted by Carlos Sainz battling on-track with Max Verstappen and the MCL-34 is clearly an improvement on last years car. The Sainz/Verstappen battle ended with a clash that put Sainz out of contention but the battle was an indicator of the potential of the car.
When Brown was asked if he thought that McLaren could fight with Red Bull more often this season he replied: "I think that will probably be optimistic.
"I was pleasantly surprised we were as close to them at the weekend. But we still feel there is a big gap to the top three and I don't think a weekend changes our views."
Brown also added that he feels that the results will switch around from one race to another as certain teams in the midfield gain an advantage for that weekend. The fight is so close in the midfield that certain circuits may favour certain teams.
"We definitely feel we had made a step but it is close in the midfield. There is nothing between fourth and ninth. I still think there will be weekends where we are the fourth/fifth quickest team and other weekends where we are eighth/ninth quickest team.
"So far we have been near the fourth/fifth in qualifying and race pace but I think it will be track specific."
Brown praised the drivers and described how pleased the team is with Sainz and Lando Norris. He was quick to highlight how close they are and made reference to other teams who have a large gap between their drivers.
"I am really pleased we have the two drivers we have because that can make a difference in the team championship. For us, it's just head down and we've got to keep working hard because it's a development war."