McLaren F1 driver Lando Norris believes that for him to start winning races, he and teammate Oscar Piastri must continue to work as a team.
During a recent conversation with Tom Daley, Norris shared insights into what it might take to secure his first Formula 1 Grand Prix victory. When asked if winning a race against a teammate is just as good as winning a race, Norris acknowledged that while inter-team rivalries can arise in F1, emphasizing the team aspect is best for his team to create harmony.
“At this current time, it’s a team game,” said Norris. “I know if I want to win a race in 2024 or 2025, the best thing is just to work, you know, in harmony as a team, as much as you can. So you’re helping each other out, you’re working together, or you’re doing whatever you can as a team.”
In Feb. 2022, McLaren announced that Norris had signed a contract extension, committing him to the team until at least 2025. He was then paired with Piastri to help secure McLaren’s first season points at the Australian Grand Prix.
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Piastri ended a contract with Alpine early to join McLaren after the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix. He and Norris finished second and third behind Red Bull’s Max Verstappen at the 2023 Qatar Grand Prix. The second-place finish was just 4.8 seconds behind Verstappen and the best placement for Piastri of the year.
Norris disclosed that his bond with Piastri was forged on a foundation of trust and respect once the 22-year-old Australian joined the McLaren team. The circumstances surrounding Piastri’s departure from Alpine, involving contractual loopholes, reportedly stirred disapproval among several figures within the Formula 1 management.
“All of it is good, to be honest. He’s a very normal guy [and] down to Earth. No ego. Just yeah, a normal guy. We get on really well,” said Norris.
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“He’s extremely good, competitive, good teammate. I think we’ve already built up a good amount of respect and trust towards one another. We’ve both got the best interest at heart, which is to help the team.”
“When you get to racing for first and second in a race, that’s when things, I think, change a huge amount,” he continued. “Now whether one of us finishes 15th or 16th, at the end of the day, it doesn’t matter that much to me. Yeah. I feel like I’m just a good teammate. I prefer to get along with my teammates than not. I always try to make it work in better ways.”
In the 2023 Driver’s Championship standings, Norris and Piastri secured the 6th and 9th spots, respectively.
McLaren failed to register a Grand Prix in 2023. The team finished 4th in the standings with a total of 302 points, trailing behind Red Bull, Mercedes, and Ferrari for the Constructors Championship.
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