|© AP Photo/Darko Vojinovic
McLaren’s campaign of challenging for the championship this year hasn’t been optimised so far, according to team principal Martin Whitmarsh.
The British team is currently second in the constructors’ standings, a solitary point ahead of Lotus and 53 behind leaders Red Bull.
But with the momentum it accrued at the Hungarian Grand Prix - before the mid-season break - it could mark the beginning of its charge should the former champions get the second half of the season right.
"In the first 11 races we were on the front row eight times, so the car is not slow in qualifying at least,” Whitmarsh told Autosport.
"But this season has been difficult for everyone – and you would have to say Fernando (Alonso) and Ferrari have done a great job: one in terms of development and two in terms of getting the best out of the package,” he pointed out. "We haven't got the best out of our package.
"We have been working hard on that and made a bit of progress, but you have to avoid mistakes as well. We have made a few mistakes, and you have to eliminate them, but we have made a bit of progress there,” he added.
After a strong start and mid-season slump, McLaren managed to up its performance in the last few races indicating that it has the pace to challenge for the top spots in the remaining nine Grands Prix although nothing is taken for granted.
“Given the unpredictability of the sport, I think it’s still difficult to predict accurately who’ll win the next Grand Prix, but I reckon the coming few weeks ought to give us a much clearer idea of the destination of the world title,” said Lewis Hamilton who is 47 points behind the leader.
“It’s going to be an extremely tough, tactical and interesting finale to the season. There’s no team with a clear advantage - although we’re all pushing hard to catch Fernando Alonso’s points tally in the drivers’ championship - so there’s still everything to play for,” he reckoned.