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Lauda cites ‘unfinished business’ in WEC after 2016 title loss

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Aston Martin Racing driver Mathias Lauda says he has “unfinished business” in the FIA World Endurance Championship after missing out on the GTE Am title in 2016.

Alongside Pedro Lamy and Paul Dalla Lana, Lauda won five WEC races last year in the No. 98 Aston Martin Vantage GTE, but the trio could only finish third in the standings for both GTE Am championships.

Retirements in Mexico, Bahrain and – most crucially – the double-points race at Le Mans meant Lauda and co. missed out on the title, with the No. 83 AF Corse entry comprising Francois Perrodo, Emmanuel Collard and Rui Aguas was able to clinch both crowns.

After also missing out on any WEC title in 2015, Lauda says he has a score to settle ahead of the start of the new endurance season at Silverstone on April 16.

“In WEC, it’s a lot about Le Mans. You need to finish because it’s double points,” Lauda told the official WEC website.

“This was the turning point where we lost the championship, because if you don’t finish Le Mans, you lose 50 points.

“At the end of the day, it was a great year. We had so many wins but we were just a bit unlucky by not finishing three races and couldn’t seal the title, which was really disappointing.

“We have unfinished business. This year, our full focus is on being really consistent, we will give everything not to do any mistakes and full focus to finish all the races.”

Lauda, Lamy and Dalla Lana will team up once again in 2017, racing in a five-car full-season GTE Am class.

McLaren almost back on schedule with 2018 F1 car after delay

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McLaren is almost back on schedule with its 2018 Formula 1 car development after losing two weeks due to a delay in deciding on its engine supplier, according to racing director Eric Boullier.

McLaren confirmed back in September it would be cutting ties with Honda at the end of the year after three difficult seasons, favoring a switch to Renault power units.

The decision was not taken lightly by McLaren, causing it to lose two weeks in the development of next year’s car, but Boullier confirmed in an interview with the official F1 website that the team is almost back on-track.

“Maybe we made the decision to change the engine manufacturer two weeks too late for our schedule, but these two weeks have almost been recovered,” Boullier said.

“Any big decisions are always difficult to take. The concept of McLaren winning with Honda was a dream for everybody, yes – it was a beautiful story.

“Today we have huge respect for them and we definitely don’t divorce with fights and screams and finger pointing. We are all very professional – and in the end it was a business decision, which they understand.

“There is a sadness that it didn’t work out like we wanted. McLaren-Honda in terms of brands was a good fit – in terms of results it didn’t work.

“That’s what it is in the end. Now we have to see that we get back to competitiveness – back to the top!”