Saturday, June 2, 2007

McLaren: No Monaco repeat in Montreal

McLaren CEO Martin Whitmarsh has admitted that it is unrealistic for the team to expect to transfer its dominant Monaco form on to the Circuit Gilles Villeneuve in Montreal next weekend. The Woking squad's drivers finished over a minute clear of the rest of the field in Monte Carlo last Sunday, to register the season's most comprehensive victory so far. However Ferrari boss Jean Todt predicted after his team's drubbing that it wouldn't be the same story in Canada, as the two circuit's characteristics are so different. Whitmarsh has now echoed those views, although he is still confident that McLaren can once again challenge its Italian rival for victory. "The Canadian Grand Prix is a very different event to the Monaco race," he said. "We go from the slowest, tightest track packed with corners on the calendar to a circuit that is all about long periods of power and braking. "The MP4-22 performed incredibly well in Monte Carlo, however as the track conditions are poles apart, we are not going to Montreal with the same expectations. "We go to Canada aiming to fight for the victory and to maintain our positions at the top of both the constructors' and drivers' championships; however are realistic about the potential to dominate." Although there will have been no testing between races, most teams did run a Montreal-style configuration on their cars during the Paul Ricard test last month. Whitmarsh says this gave McLaren good data for what he is expecting to be a challenging Canadian Grand Prix weekend. "The test at Paul Ricard prior to Monaco had two days of Canada running and useful intelligence was gained," he said. "It is going to be a tougher battle and the track is notoriously tough on race cars, but we will keep pushing."

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