McLaren and Ferrari: from hero to zero in just one week

McLaren and Ferrari: from hero to zero in just one week

Let's talk about two of the greatest teams in Formula 1's history: Ferrari and McLaren. Two outfits with a past full of victories and championships...but with an inconsistent present and far from the top spots of the standings.

Both teams had a difficult start to the season. They struggled to meet the expected results, and it's not a secret that their recent years haven't been the best. However, everyone expects them to improve year after year until they are finally able to build a competitive car that can help their drivers to be in the fight for the championship. But considering how things stand right now, this seems extremely difficult.

Both the MCL60 and the SF-23 lack pace and are not competitive. Ferrari isn't able to challenge Red Bull and not even Aston Martin (at least on Sunday). While the truth for McLaren is even worse, as they cannot even fight for points consistently. It truly is a difficult moment for the fans of these historic teams.

Improvement in Baku, disaster in Miami

The tough start to the season seemed to be over when the paddock visited Baku. Both McLaren and Ferrari were unexpectedly competitive and could score points. By looking at the results of that weekend, everybody hoped that from that moment on, both teams could finally compete at least for the top ten positions at every race.

In Baku, Charles Leclerc scored two pole positions, a podium in the sprint race, and another one on Sunday. Even though Carlos Sainz was far from his teammate, he still managed to be competitive. All in all, Ferrari couldn't be disappointed with the results achieved.

On McLaren's side, Lando Norris scored points, finishing P9. Oscar Piastri was a bit unlucky as he crossed the line in P11, but he wasn't far from the top ten. Considering the team's performance prior to that weekend, the result was surely positive.

Everything was hinting at an improvement in the overall performance of both teams, but everything vanished in just a week when the Miami Grand Prix revealed the harsh truth.

McLaren probably showed its worst shape of the whole season so far. They ended up in the last places of the standings, they were never competitive, and it was almost as if the MCL60 was a Formula 2 car compared to the other challengers. It seemed to go back to a few years ago when Fernando Alonso said he was racing with a GP2 engine.

For too long McLaren has been letting its fans down, but in 2020, things started to change. The team's performance improved, and good results were finally coming. However, unluckily for the fans of the Woking-based outfit, McLaren has been going backward in the last two years, and it feels like to be back in 2015, 2016, and 2017 seasons.

Speaking of Ferrari, the Miami GP showed a step backward in terms of development, demonstrating that the Scuderia is not able to regularly fight for podiums. Leclerc finished P7 after a hard-fought battle against teams that, on paper, should be a lot less quick than Ferrari, such as Alpine and Haas.

Sainz finished P5, but this cannot be considered a positive result for the Maranello-based team. However, if we want to be realistic, this is probably the best place Ferrari can aim for, behind Red Bull and Aston Martin, and really close to Mercedes.

The Miami GP was a hard challenge for both teams. They both saw that the apparent improvements in Baku were just a mirage. Only time will tell whether these giants of the sport will be able to fight back and improve, but as of now, it doesn't seem to be the case.