McLaren team principal Martin Whitmarsh confirmed today that the team will reduce development of this year’s car after the next race in Budapest and throw most of its efforts into ensuring that it has a race winning car in 2010.
Speaking to Radio 5 Live today, Whitmarsh said, “This race and Hungary we will have a big push from the team and let’s hope it puts us in the hunt. Then inevitably we have to put effort into making sure we have a very fast car next year. There’s a lot of effort as the car will be radically different from this year’s car.”
Brawn has enjoyed a significant advantage this season thanks to spending most of last season developing its 2009 car, rather than develop its 2008 car. With next year’s car likely to have a longer wheelbase due to doubling the size of the fuel tank, many teams are tempted to give up on 2009 and ’do a Brawn’ on next year’s car.
McLaren has a range of new parts on the car here this weekend. In Friday practice Heikki Kovalainen is using a new front wing, while Lewis Hamilton has a new floor and top body as well as new rear suspension. According to Whitmarsh many of the parts were scheduled for Budapest and have been brought forward.