McLaren F1 Team – F1ntastic.com’s Guide To Formula 1

2021 Formula 1 Teams: McLaren F1 Team
Full Team NameMcLaren F1 Team
BaseWoking, United Kingdom
Team ChiefAndreas Seidl
Technical ChiefJames Key
ChassisMCL35M
Power UnitMercedes
First Team Entry1966
World Championships8
Highest Race Finish1 (x182)
Pole Positions155
Fastest Laps158

McLaren F1 Team is the 2nd oldest of the 2021 Formula 1 Teams and has always been McLaren, from the very start. The ownership and the overall brand of McLaren have stayed the same for an astonishing 55 years. McLaren is the 2nd most successful Formula 1 team in history. They have 8 constructors’ titles, 12 drivers’ titles, and 182 race wins. These absolutely astonishing numbers give you guys a perspective of how McLaren has such a rich history. These numbers prove that McLaren knows how to succeed and that they’ll get back to the top step of the podium. 2019 and 2020 have been massive steps in the right direction for Mclaren, and have shown incredible progress for the McLaren team. In 2020, McLaren finished 3rd in the constructor’s championship; a fantastic achievement.

In 1966, Bruce McLaren, a New Zealand racing driver, founded Bruce McLaren Racing Ltd. He had already been a Formula 1 driver for about 7 years, and at the end of 1965, he left the Cooper team to start his own team. As was expected of a new Formula 1 team back in the ’60s the team was very unsuccessful. They couldn’t afford the best engines, so their cars were unreliable and underpowered. But after 2 years, they switched to the Ford-Cosworth DFV engines and finished 1969 and 1970 in 5th in the constructors’ title. They were succeeding. But in the middle of 1970, Bruce McLaren died in a car crash while testing a McLaren Can-Am racing car. It was a shame, because, in 1974, McLaren won their first constructors’ title and their first drivers’ title with Emerson Fittipaldi. It was something Bruce would’ve loved to see.

The next glory era was from 1984 to 1993. McLaren won 6 of the 10 titles they were fighting for. This was the Senna-Prost era, it was also the era in which Niki Lauda won one of his titles. It was arguably the greatest era in Formula 1 history and an era that will be cherished forever. For the next 4 years, McLaren was the 4th fastest team, until they won their last constructors’ title (so far) in 1998, by a good margin of 23 points. Their driver, Mika Hakkinen, won the drivers’ title and he did it again in 1999, but McLaren lost the constructors’ title by 4 points to Ferrari. 2008 was the last time a McLaren F1 driver won the drivers’ title when Lewis Hamilton won the drivers’ title by one point. Since then, things haven’t exactly been as McLaren wanted them to be.

McLaren’s pains in 2015 make their comeback story even more inspiring.

Given their prestigious and rich history, it is easy to expect McLaren to be fighting for titles. But from 2013-2017, the competitiveness of the team went into a downward spiral. They went from fighting for the title to fighting for podiums, to fighting for a Top 5 position, to fighting for points. And then in 2015, the Honda engine was so bad that the McLarens were sometimes fighting to finish the race. 2015 was a real low point, but 2016 was better, with McLaren earning points a little bit more consistently. After a dismal 2017, McLaren got rid of Honda, starting using Renault engines, and embarked on an incredibly quick rise through the ranks. A comeback story began, with the best thing about it being that the story isn’t over yet.

In 2018, McLaren scored almost as many points as they did in 2016. They finished the year in 6th in the standings, which was a LEAP compared to their 9th-place finish in 2017. 2019, what a year it was for McLaren. It was almost like the team had been refurbished, re-energized, with a new sense of hope and determination. Alonso and Vandoorne, the 2018 McLaren drivers, left the team, making way for the youngsters Carlos Sainz and Lando Norris, with the latter being a promising rookie. Even though it was Lando’s first season in Formula 1, he scored a respectable 49 points. But Carlos knocked the ball out of the park. He was clearly the leading driver of the team, scoring 96 points in 2019. 2020 was EVEN BETTER, with McLaren taking 3rd in the championship after a close fight with Renault (now Alpine) and Racing Point (now Aston Martin).

2021 is going to be an incredibly important year for McLaren because they’re looking to do something very difficult. They want to bridge the gap between the midfield and the front runners of Mercedes and Red Bull. They want to be able to make themselves a top team again, with their talented drivers behind the wheel of an even faster Mercedes-powered car. Let’s see what Daniel Ricciardo and Lando Norris can do, and let’s see whether McLaren can continue their excellent streak of achieving their ambitious goals. To learn more about the drivers racing for McLaren, visit our guide to the 2021 F1 Drivers.