While Lando Norris welcomes new personnel from Red Bull & Ferrari, McLaren ready to end decade-long alliance with Toyota

One aspect of the 2023 season that no one saw coming this season was McLaren’s comeback out of the blue. Except perhaps Mika Hakkinen, who in the middle of June, and at the time McLaren were still at only 19 points after 7 races. In an interview preceding the Canadian GP, Hakkinen made a bold claim that within the next couple of months, McLaren’s development would reach a point where they would be able to challenge Red Bull.

Of course, at the time he was ridiculed for such a statement. Statements like “I’ll have what he’s having” and “How much are McLaren paying him?” were thrown around by fans. But when around came the 2023 Austrian GP, Lando Norris vide a brilliant drive brought his car across the line in P4, almost as if to prove Mika right!

Lando Norris welcomes Red Bull and Ferrari staff

Perhaps one of the major motivators for the fast-paced development which took and is taking place at McLaren is due to the advent of now-former Red Bull engineering chief Rob Marshall to McLaren as well as Ferrari’s head of concept David Sanchez. It’s clear to see that McLaren is making moves to crawl its way up the table, setting high hopes for fans for 2024. 

However, fans are not the only ones who are looking forward to the upcoming changes at McLaren. When asked about the new arrivals from the rival teams, Lando Norris had this to say:


“We have some good people that are coming from Ferrari, from Red Bull, people who have a lot of respect, knowledge, expertise in all of these different areas. So I’m looking forward to what’s to come.”

However, these new arrivals are not the only major changes going on at McLaren.

McLaren expected to end partnership with Toyota

Recently, McLaren brought an end to their long-standing 12-year wind tunnel partnership with Toyota. Since 2010, all McLaren challengers have been developed using the wind tunnel offered by Toyota per the deal with McLaren. However, McLaren has recently switched over to their own new wind tunnel, bringing an end to this deal.

Lando Norris

However, simply because the wind tunnel deal is no longer in place, Toyota does not wish to end its relationship with McLaren. The managing director at Toyota, Rob Leupen had this to say:

“Our door remains open to McLaren. We wish them nothing but success with the new wind tunnel and, whilst that naturally changes what services McLaren requires from TGR-E and how often their engineers are likely to be in Cologne, we have an open dialogue and are playing a constructive part in the process of integrating their new wind tunnel into their development program.”

Would you like to see McLaren, Norris, and Piastri as contenders for the title in 2024? Comment on what you guys think down below!


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