McLaren has defended the ‘aggressive’ design of its 2018 car. Even after dumping Honda, the British team is still the team that endured the most troubled 2018 winter. Many believe the problem can be traced to the aggressive packaging of the orange car, with burn marks and emergency venting seen at the back of the engine cover.

But team boss Eric Boullier insisted: “If you want to get back to the front, you have to develop aggressively. “We have an ambitious design that will eventually pay off,” he added.

The result of the troubled winter, however, is that Boullier cannot even guarantee a race finish in Melbourne.

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