Heikki Kovalainen is adamant McLaren will bounce back from their early season slump as the team prepare for this weekend’s Turkish Grand Prix in Istanbul.
Major flaws in the design of the MP4-24, allied to poor reliability and some uncharacteristic mistakes from drivers Lewis Hamilton and Heikki Kovalainen have all but eradicated McLaren’s chances of defending their world championships. The team are currently languishing in fifth place in the constructors’ championship over seventy points behind Brawn GP.
Kovalainen himself has only scored four points after making costly mistakes in Australia, Malaysia and Monaco.
“I was hoping to have more points and it is really disappointing that I have only finished two races so far,” reflects the Finn, speaking to the official Formula One website.
But Kovalainen is adamant that the team will bounce back, potentially challenging the front runners as early as this weekend’s Turkish Grand Prix.
“We are realistic and we are making progress. Everybody has their ups and downs, even the other teams. It is a difficult time for us and we just have to stay strong, move on and come back stronger.”
A chief cause of McLaren’s disappointing pace has been the MP4-24’s handling in the high speed corners. The team are hoping that a modified floor for this weekend’s grand prix will bring them closer to the sharp end of the grid.
“It will hopefully give us more grip in the high-speed corners, and also we have improved the modified front wing, as an attempt to increase the downforce level,” says Heikki Kovalainen.
“We will test the modifications on Friday to see how they perform. I hope they deliver, as I am sure the team would not bring them without thinking that they will improve the performance.”