Sometimes a grand prize hatches in a fantasy story with dreamy endings, written by a singular and capricious destiny. Like the last Italian GP. Neither McLaren nor Daniel Ricciardo would have designed the outcome of the Italian race on the pillow, which provided one of the most fun and grateful podiums in recent times.
Because breaking almost a decade without victories for one of the historical figures of Formula 1 is not just any milestone. Achieving it with a double against Mercedes and Red Bull in these times is already refining success. The team with the most wins after Ferrari too has starred in the second longest period without winning in the discipline. Specifically, 3,213 days, the longest streak in McLaren history.
Closing such a crossing of the desert by the driver who dragged himself with his car in 2021 provided an emotional finishing touch. All this wrapping The success of Zak Brown thus culminates with the reconversion process that he undertook to bring McLaren out of the morass.
Motorsport royalty watching yesterday’s #ItalianGP! 👑
Thanks for the support, @ ValeYellow46. 👊
– McLaren (@ McLarenF1) September 13, 2021
“He’s disappointed, and we”
It was disheartening to see one of the most jovial drivers on the grid in the Parc Fermé at Hugaroring, clinging to the halo and without leaving his car, such was his desolation. He had been rammed into the first corner of the Hungarian GP. Another disaster in 2021. Daniel Ricciardo arrived as a great star at McLaren, but he could not adapt to the particularities of the MCL35M. In training in Monaco, the Briton had nailed him a second. In the closing stages of the Monaco GP, Lando Norris thanked his teammate for letting himself go. Norris took the podium.
Combined with his braking style, Ricciardo did not catch the singular corner entry of his new car at once. Despite their support during the first months, even Andreas Seidl himself began to raise the alarm. “I don’t think he thought it would be so difficult to change teams. Ricciardo is disappointed and so are we, we thought it would adapt faster. But I remain convinced that, at some point, everything will fall into place. “In the fight for third place with Ferrari, Leclerc and Sainz consistently score points despite being inferior on many tracks. Ricciardo was the weak link. Coming to the break In the summertime, the Australian had 50 points to his teammate’s 113, who surpassed him in absolutely all the statistics by a wide margin.
Well, where to start… 😅
McLaren family, you sure know how to celebrate a win – here’s a bumper episode of ‘That was the weekend that was!’. 📱#ItalianGP 🇮🇹
– McLaren (@ McLarenF1) September 13, 2021
“We don’t know what he’s done.”
What has changed for such a metaformosis? McLaren’s one-two confirmed that the MCL35M was a glove for Monza, both for traction and top speed. For his part, the Australian had taken a breath in the summer break. He even admitted that he had turned to home simulators, something he previously rejected as a game, to probe for answers to his problems. “We do not know what he has done during those two weeks (pause)And we don’t want to know it either, “Andreas Seidl himself joked after the race.” It’s good to take a break, to take distance after such an intense period for him, in which he has put a lot of energy without the results coming. Maybe he needed that pause to get away, reflect and come back and apply everything that has worked during the middle of the season ”. After intense rational work, analysis and conscious assimilation, the subconscious did its job fitting the pieces together. The next races will confirm it.
Ricciardo reflected after his victory from a more personal rather than a professional perspective on what he had experienced these months, perhaps the most disconcerting of his career in Formula 1. “I have had moments of frustration, of letting myself fall, but I decided they would not last. And I also wanted to try it, win something from all of it and learn. There were days where I have not loved what I do, but I have had them every year. But this has probably been more “, he confessed after the test,” I do not regret them, they are the ones that make you appreciate the good days, but tThey also make you understand some internal issues within you, and how much you want it and it means to you. This is the most important of this weekend. There was a great desire to fight for the podium. When I got to that moment and to that level, I went to the hilt ”.
It’s ok @LandoNorris, I don’t think anyone noticed. 🍾🤦♂️
– McLaren (@ McLarenF1) September 14, 2021
Lando Norris grace
But as remarkable as the resurrection of such a charismatic figure was the grace with which Lando Norris assumed his teammate’s victory in the best opportunity for McLaren in a decade. All year brushing the post, but the ball went in for the other driver. He has five podiums with the team, but Ricciardo’s first was victory. His demeanor and words dignified his disappointment. “It’s incredible. The main thing for me is our result as a team. Whether it’s second, third or first, I think the best thing is to achieve this double for the team, to secure maximum points, it’s a great feeling to be part of this.” Deasde who entered the finish line until the public celebrations ended, Norris was a ‘chapeau’.
But the McLaren triumph has two fathers and a long journey. By a bond, Zak Brown, responsible for the transformation of the British team since his arrival. First, dismantling the previous structure and creating another with simplified and solid leadership in all areas. Also rebuilding the commercial portfolio and making difficult decisions such as the farewell of Honda, Renault, and the arrival of Mercedes. But above all, giving a ball.
Pragmatic and intelligent, Brown gave all the sporting power to one of the best managers in Formula 1, Andreas Seidl, whose methods and philosophy have brought McLaren to its current position in three years. At the end of the Italian GP, Seidl warned that the feet should continue to tread on the ground. Because the week before, in Zandvoort, “they had destroyed us”. McLaren has won again. In a few years, he will fight for the title. Place bets.