Magnussen encouraged by McLaren improvements
3 July 2014 – Kevin Magnussen says he is encouraged by the upgrades that McLaren fitted to the MP4-29 in Austria and believes that the team now has a good baseline for the future.
Magnussen finished in seventh place in Austria, his best result since he claimed a podium place on his debut in Australia.
The Dane reckons that despite McLaren making small steps, they are nonetheless crucial as they bid to improve on their current sixth place in the Constructors' championship.
"The good thing is we've got the downforce and it [the upgrades] didn't upset the downforce," he said of the improved package McLaren introduced in Austria.
"It's a small step, not massive, but we need those small steps all the time. The really positive thing is how the car feels; it might not be the quickest thing at the moment but it feels really good and had a good baseline.
"This baseline can work for many years and it's good to have that base. We just need to put good, efficient downforce on it all the time."
Magnussen said that while McLaren lacks the ultimate pace of its frontrunning rivals, he is optimistic that the positive feeling of the MP4-29 will aid progress at this weekend's British Grand Prix.
"It's a high speed track with long straights so if you have a high downforce car which is very efficient you will be very good here," he said.
"We need to work on the efficiency and downforce. The good thing is that it's a good handling car and in fast corners you want a car that's good handling and easy to drive."
Magnussen also reckons that improving the downforce levels of the current package will aid the team's use of tyres.
"Sometimes it can be hard to switch on the tyres, if you have less downforce it'll be harder to switch on the tyres, especially the hard compounds," he said.
"I think it can go the other way as well, if you have it on the Softs you grain them easier, so you need downforce – the biggest part of Formula 1 is downforce, and efficient downforce."