‘Very encouraging’ progress for Piastri

McLaren is encouraged by the early progress it has seen from Oscar Piastri

McLaren is encouraged by the early progress it has seen from Oscar Piastri

McLaren team boss Andrea Stella has described the progress made by Oscar Piastri across the Bahrain Grand Prix as “very encouraging”.

The Australian was an early retirement in his debut F1 race after an electrical problem in his McLaren MCL60 left him stuck in the pits.

He’d climbed his way from 18th on the grid to 15th in the dozen or so laps he did complete, negotiating his way through his first racing laps in over a year.

That followed a qualifying session where a slide at Turn 2 on his final lap cost him any chance of progressing to Qualifying 2 but still offered positive signs.

McLaren has been left impressed by the youngster and the level he’s already operating at, and how – when corrected for his mistakes on his qualifying lap – closely matched with team-mate Lando Norris he already is.

And there is more to come as Piastri becomes more comfortable and confident in himself, the team, and the car.

“I think it’s the overall racecraft that we need to develop,” Stella said when asked by Speedcafe.com what areas he’d like Piastri to focus on.

“Not because there’s any lack of talent, it’s just time in the car, really.

“But we are very pleased with what we saw yesterday in qualifying because, apart from the big oversteer he had in corner two, which meant he lost basically the possibility to go to Q2 in a single corner, in some other corners he was a match for Lando, which is very encouraging.

“In terms of pure speed in your new tyres, and today in the race the sustained consistency, lap after lap, was the best long run he has done.

“So just carry on in all areas with the same methodical and progressive approach that he has had so far.”

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