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  1. #1
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    Can Mclaren win championships with Renault?

    Mclaren dropped their very promising project with Honda for Renault engines with the reason given being that they are more likely to win races with the Renault engine at least than the then very buggy Honda engines. As it turned out, the Mclaren chassis was not as good as they proclaimed it was. The packaging of the chassis has had all manner of associated failures which has resulted in poor performances with a Renault engine that Redbull has used to win four races.

    The benchmark for Mclaren was Redbull with a Renault engine and they have fallen well short of the mark. But there is a new regulation in 2019, which gives Mclaren a chance of a clean slate. If they can get round their design challenges and somehow put together a highly competitive chassis, the question is can they be a championship contender with the Renault engine?

    One popular argument is that, if Redbull can win four titles with a Renault engine, why not Mclaren. There however, is one small difference in the context of both teams, Redbull was not competing with an aspiring works Renault team. Mclaren would be required to beat the works Renault team before it can defeat any other team for the title. The current rule require manufacturing teams to provide the same engine it uses to their customer teams. Hence Mclaren would be racing Renault with equivalent engine in both cars; in theory.

    Which leaves us with two related questions, Can Mclaren beat Renault with a Renault engine? Can the Renault engine catch up to the Mercedes and Ferrari engines?

    One could argue that Renault are on the F1 paddock with an aspiration to win the constructors title. To do that they would need to build a championship winning engine and chassis at some point. Which implies that there is a slim chance that Mclaren may have access to a championship winning engine at some point in the future.

    With this hypothesis, what do you think, are they likely to win a championship with a Renault engine against a Renault team with Ricciado in one of their cars.
    Last edited by Nitrodaze; 19th November 2018 at 17:08.
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  2. #2
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    I hope I'm wrong but it doesn't look very likely for either Renault or McLaren to be competitive again any time soon.

    Renault simply dont have the same budget as Merc and Ferrari... and with the Honda money also gone, McLaren have a huge financial deficit for F1 as well as being engine customers once again.

    I suspect the Honda engine will overtake Renault next year.. if it hasn't already done so.

    Meanwhile Red Bull with Honda money?.. I wonder how much higher their development budget is now? A sobering thought..

  3. #3
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    McLaren started its long decline in 2013, where during the transition from 2012 to 2013, it went from hero to zero (McLaren was arguably the dominant car at the end of the 2012 season). The 2012 car reached the end of its development potential they said, despite many calls to return the 2012 car in mid-2013 season, so bad the 2013 McLaren design was. Then in 2014, McLaren went down even more, scoring zero podiums despite using the dominant Mercedes engine. Mercedes stopped sharing information with them, they said. Then they moved onto the Honda engine and had three horrible seasons as the backmarkers and F1's laughing stock. They blamed it on the Honda engine and then passed it onto Toro Rosso (who are now a solid mid-field team). Now in 2018, they use the Renault engine and if it wasn't for Force India's transfer of ownership, McLaren still would have been only in the the seventh constructors place right now.

    So what should we conclude? We have seen six years of failures for McLaren. Why would we expect better for them in 2018?

    PS: sorry I meant 2019 there.
    Last edited by zako85; 20th November 2018 at 15:38.

  4. #4
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    I can think of 100 million reasons why McLaren are still struggling.

  5. #5
    Senior Member Jag_Warrior's Avatar
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    I believe that McLaren will turn it around and be competitive again well before Williams. But I don't think that the power unit supplier is the problem in either case. I think that both teams have some serious organizational and systemic problems that must be overcome. McLaren seems to still have some heavy funding backing them up, along with better management (I didn't say good, just better), so that's the only reason I think they'll find relative improvement.

    Both teams have suffered a major exodus of talent over the years too. That's something that I wish the racing press would tell us more about.
    "Every generation's memory is exactly as long as its own experience." --John Kenneth Galbraith

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jag_Warrior View Post
    I believe that McLaren will turn it around and be competitive again well before Williams. But I don't think that the power unit supplier is the problem in either case. I think that both teams have some serious organizational and systemic problems that must be overcome. McLaren seems to still have some heavy funding backing them up, along with better management (I didn't say good, just better), so that's the only reason I think they'll find relative improvement.

    Both teams have suffered a major exodus of talent over the years too. That's something that I wish the racing press would tell us more about.
    I think there is a good chance that they would. This is a great opportunity for Zak Brown to stamp his name into Mclaren's history rather than a foot note of it. He has a chance to make the the team into his philosophical approach to racing and become to Mclaren like Elon Musk was to Tesla. The problem elements in Mclaren are gone and Mclaren is starting with a clean slate. Bringing in new blood and developing a new mentality within the team.

    If Zak can bring everyone on board is vision for the team, l see no reason why Mclaren cannot find its way back to the sharp end of the grid. Zak Brown simply needs to fill the boots of his predecessor convincingly before any real progress would happen. I think from, what l have seen of him, that he should be able to do that without problems.
    Better a witty fool than a foolish wit.
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  7. #7
    Senior Member Jag_Warrior's Avatar
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    I'm a big Zak Brown fan. I was hoping that he'd take over Champ Car way back when. Then I was hoping that he'd take over F1 when Bernie was sorta/kinda looking for a successor. On the sponsorship and marketing fronts, he was/is a genius. And he seems to have excellent organizational and people skills. In short, if Zak Brown can't get McLaren turned around, then it's probably headed the way of Williams: a legacy team with no direction.

    I think he'll do it though.
    "Every generation's memory is exactly as long as its own experience." --John Kenneth Galbraith

  8. #8
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    As much as I would like to see McLaren back in the front row, I dont see it coming anytime soon. But not with Sainz and Norris. McLaren has been ruining these young promising drivers for nearly 10 years (Hamilton is only exception here), just look at Vandoorne, dominant in GP2 and GP3, Perez was there, didnt work out. Kovalainen (altought not so promising) went downhill from McLaren. K-Mag was there, didnt work out either. And the reliability of the car... as far as i have followed and watched from the early 90's has had so much reliability issues, they could have won much more.

    But yeah, I would love to see McLaren to rise up. But it needs a lot of work. Maybe not with Renault engine, but do they have much other options at this moment?

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