McLaren: Tyre use, not car performance behind F1 Las Vegas Q1 exit
McLaren had low expectations heading into the race weekend in Vegas and those expectations were justified on the low-downforce street circuit, resulting in their worst qualifying performance since the summer upgrade. The team’s main stumbling block was the execution of the session itself, as they were focused on trying to squeeze performance out of the car. Norris and Piastri opted to use only one set of soft tires, based on evidence from practice, but it turned out to be the wrong decision. The team realized too late that the tires were degrading and didn’t have a clear indication that using a second set would be better. Despite the circumstances, McLaren believes the car is not a complete disaster and had the potential to perform well if they had made it to Q3.