'No way' McLaren can challenge Mercedes for wins in 2021 - Seidl

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McLaren team boss Andreas Seidl is ruling out any possibility of fighting for wins with Mercedes engines from 2021.

Over the past two seasons, the Woking-based outfit has made tremendous progress, recovering from the dark days of Honda to leading the midfield pack last year.

As part of the ongoing plan to make McLaren a front-running team again, it was decided to drop current supplier Renault and rekindle their famous partnership with Mercedes, which won two world championships with Mika Hakkinen in 1998 and 1999.

Hakkinen McL 1999

However, Seidl says it will need more than the same engine to close the current gap to the German manufacturer.

“No, we need to be realistic," he said on if wins were possible next season.

“The main thing for me is that we simply keep evolving as a team, which means also we make the next step with the car because that is the only way to get to the front again in Formula 1.

“Of course, with everything I see what is happening back home, the changes that are coming, the development side, it looks encouraging in order to make the next step with the car.

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“We are happy, but at the same time, we should never underestimate that the competition is working as hard as we do and have also a lot of potential," the German noted.

“Our aim is clear. We want to improve and hopefully, we are in a position to put up some good races and some good fights, but it is clear we need to be realistic.

“There is no way to make suddenly a jump and challenge the Mercedes cars.”

Currently, McLaren is embroiled in a titanic tussle with Racing Point and Renault for third in the Constructors' standings, with the three teams covered by just six points with six races to go.