New McLaren to debut this weekend

The development McLaren MP4-19B will debut at the French Grand Prix this weekend after intensive test sessions recently. The current MP4-19 has been an uncompetitive car and the drivers are keen to see the back of it. Some team members had hoped...

The development McLaren MP4-19B will debut at the French Grand Prix this weekend after intensive test sessions recently. The current MP4-19 has been an uncompetitive car and the drivers are keen to see the back of it. Some team members had hoped to take the 19B to the North American leg of the championship but it was decided more testing was the prudent course of action.

Now, however, the new car is ready to tackle competition. Test results at Jerez last week were encouraging, said McLaren CEO Martin Whitmarsh. "We believe that the outcome from both a performance and reliability perspective demonstrates that MP4-19B is a step in the right direction, which is why the decision to race the car has been made," he explained.

Mercedes motorsport boss Norbert Haug is equally positive and is keen to see how the car performs. "The entire team worked extremely hard to prepare the MP4-19B for Magny Cours and everybody is keen to see a performance step with this car in terms of both speed and reliability," he commented.

For Kimi Raikkonen and David Coulthard the change is surely long overdue. The pair have only managed 17 points between them so far this season, using the 'old' car that constantly suffered technical problems and engine failures.

"It has run well in testing and I hope that it will run as reliably in the race as it did at Jerez," said Raikkonen of the 19B. Teammate Coulthard commented: "As with the rest of the team, I feel it is a positive move and I am looking forward to seeing how it goes this weekend."

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About this article
Series Formula 1
Drivers David Coulthard , Kimi Raikkonen , Norbert Haug , Martin Whitmarsh
Teams Mercedes , McLaren