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McLaren launch: Watch the first F1 2021 car and team reveal on Sky Sports F1

Watch the first launch event of 2021 ahead of the new Formula 1 season for free and on demand below as McLaren revealed their new car and Daniel Ricciardo made his official debut at Woking

McLaren kick started Formula 1 2021 when they became the first outfit to launch their car and team for the new season, live on Sky Sports F1.

McLaren kick started Formula 1 2021 when they became the first outfit to launch their car and team for the new season, live on Sky Sports F1.

Shown live on Sky F1 and digital platforms on Monday night, the event was the first time that McLaren's new star signing Daniel Ricciardo was seen in the Woking team's colours following his winter switch from Renault. He partners Lando Norris, who begins his third season of F1.

In further significance, 2021 represents the team's return to Mercedes engines for the first time in seven years after three seasons powered by Renault.

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McLaren chief executive Zak Brown speaks to Sky Sports ahead of the team's car launch about 2021 prospects and the latest rules talks in F1.

McLaren's new car - called the MCL35M - was for the first time as part of the launch event ahead of a season in which they will aim to build on a hugely-successful 2020 when they returned to the top three of the Constructors' Championship for the first time in eight years.


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McLaren on the rise again

The eight-time constructors' champions also received a big boost just before Christmas when American investment firm MSP Sports Capital came on board in a deal that will see them buy 33 per cent of McLaren Racing by the end of next year.

Speaking to Sky Sports at the end of last season, McLaren chief executive Zak Brown said: "I think we do have everything that we need.

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"It'll take time. [Team principal] Andreas Seidl has done an unbelievable job leading the Formula 1 team. We've got two great drivers. We've got the Mercedes power plant. We've got fantastic men and women at the racetrack and back at the factory all building towards this race car to make it go as fast as possible.

"So, I think we need some time for it all to come together, but I don't think there are any pieces to the puzzle missing now. We've just got to put the puzzle together."

One of the challenges for McLaren's engineers this winter has been incorporating the change of engine into their 2021 car.

James Key, McLaren's technical director, told the team's website: "We can't just carry over the chassis from 2020. We've had to do a lot of redesigning, especially when it comes to various systems on the car, such as cooling and electronics. Not only will the chassis be different, the gearbox will be too and, of course, the engine, so the MCL35M is akin to a new car for us.

"Having to spend 2021 development tokens on the Mercedes engine installation changed our approach when it came to developments this season. But the upshot of it is that we probably added a bit of performance in 2020 that we normally wouldn't have and there's scope to develop these areas further based on all the information we've gathered."

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