This weekend we travelled the short distance to our home grand prix at Silverstone, with resident Vodafone McLaren Mercedes Tweeter 'The Fifth Driver' bringing you the very best insights into the world of grand prix racing on our official Twitter channel @McLarenF1.
Here's a few of the best questions answered in full.
#socialfriday [email protected]: "What are the red & black 'knobs' on the mechanics' headphones for?"
TFD: The red and black knobs on the mechanics’ headphones connect to the driver and mechanic channels. Normally the driver channel is reserved for their respective race engineers so that the drivers can concentrate on the job in hand. The mechanics’ channel is used for instructions so that even when it is noisy in the garage, they can still communicate with each other. You might have noticed the Vodafone McLaren Mercedes management team on the pit wall pressing buttons beneath their screens which, in addition to the red and black knobs on their headphones, also connects them to the channels.
#socialfriday @Jebs: "How do you get used to the loud noises of the engines etc? How good are the ear protectors?"
TFD: As a company, we take health and wellbeing very seriously. All team members are able to use individually moulded earpieces to ensure their hearing is not affected by the loud noises usually encountered at a grand prix. In addition, our Kenwood radio headsets are soundproofed, providing excellent ear protection as well as allowing trouble-free communication between team members even when normal conversation would be drowned out by engine noise.
Additionally, all travelling team members undergo a thorough annual hearing test, to ensure they aren't encountering any long-term hearing issues.
Visitors to our garage are always recommended to wear ear protection - we have a plentiful supply of mouldable earplugs which do an excellent job of muting the extreme decibels inside the pits.
Tweet McLaren! New live fan feed launched
#socialfriday [email protected]: "What does the team think is the best thing about the British GP?"
TFD: Without doubt it is the incredible support that we receive there from all our fans. Once again this year the stands around the circuit were awash with #RocketRed. It really gives us such a huge boost to see the fans' passion and support. Jenson and Checo were taken aback by all the messages of support on Twitter (via the hashtag #BelieveInMcLaren) and the countless banners and flags throughout the entire race weekend at Silverstone. The whole team is so grateful for the special atmosphere the fans create for us there. That’s why we always look forward to racing at Silverstone! #TopFans
#socialfriday @Nafes_cydonia asks: "Why is the livery on the sidepods different at different races, for example Bahrain or the USA?"
TFD: The majority of our partners are global and therefore sometimes choose to promote local-market brands in order to maximise the exposure that appearing on the side of our cars brings. Our in-house graphics team will be notified in advance of the changes and begin creating the bespoke graphics to go onto the bodywork.
#socialfriday @EstevanAzua: “Does the team practice during the weeks off from racing?”
TFD: The pit crew are constantly practicing pitstops at the MTC. The procedure is rehearsed in a race bay where all the pit crew are in position. They do this over and over again in order to try and improve speed and consistency; given the pitstop is now such an important element of a race. A split second can make the difference between an exit from the pit lane into clean air and space on track and dirty air behind another driver.