• McLaren news

Dennis critical of McLaren drivers

ESPNF1 Staff
July 31, 2010 « Cypher Group pulls out of F1 bid | »
Lewis Hamilton admitted McLaren was well off the pace on Friday © Getty Images

McLaren group chairman and former team principal Ron Dennis has criticised drivers Lewis Hamilton and Jenson Button for their negative comments regarding the qualifying pace of the MP4-25.

Hamilton and Button ended Friday's free practice session sixth and ninth fastest respectively and conceded afterwards that it would be difficult to match the pace of Red Bull and Ferrari this weekend.

"We do have a very good race car," said Dennis. "So I find it infuriating when my guys say 'I wish I was on the front row' and build in the perception that we're giving them cars less capable of winning races. It's the nature of drivers."

Te team's current team boss, Martin Whitmarsh, played down Dennis' comments.

"Ron's not actually involved in running the race team, but he is, of course, chairman of the group and a shareholder in it," added Whitmarsh. "While we're encouraged by both drivers' feedback, and by the overall balance of the car, the pace of the front-runners was somewhat unexpected.

"Nevertheless, we've amassed plenty of useful data, and we're armed with a lot of information. As usual, we'll be working hard tonight in preparation for tomorrow's qualifying session, and we're confident of being able to make further improvements to our car."