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McLaren Boss Defends Norris's Conduct in Race

Stella Commends Norris’s Initial Composure at F1

25/06/2024

McLaren F1 director Stella praises Norris for his initial discipline during the race, firmly standing by his driver.

Andrea Stella, the director of McLaren F1, regrets not being able to contend for victory in Spain. However, he is not surprised that Lando Norris could not maintain his lead at the start despite his pole position. He denies that the slightly mishandled pit stop by his team affected the outcome.

“We have no room for imprecision. But I would say the main factor is that we could not defend the lead,” Stella conceded. “In Barcelona, it’s hardly a surprise. Indeed, the straight line to the first turn is very long.”

“The cars have a high downforce coefficient. As soon as you gain a bit of slipstream, you are much faster than the car ahead, which means Lando was not in a position to defend his pole position.”

While he does not blame Norris, Stella is convinced that this was the cause of the defeat: “We lost a few positions at the first turn. I would say the two positions lost at the first turn and the time lost behind Russell are the two decisive factors. The pit stop probably added a second.”

“But I think actually, Lando’s start was not that bad. It was a good start. He had almost a car’s length on Max. He could have gained a meter, but that’s not what would have changed things. It’s marginal. The fact is that Russell benefited from the double slipstream from Lando and Max.”

“And at the first turn, I think Lando was very wise. Because it only takes a second for your race to be lost. And that’s not the way we want to race. We want to stay in the race. So, I think from the perspective of opportunities, as we’ve said before, it’s more of a detail.”

The Italian thinks that Norris’s tendency to focus on his own shortcomings rather than blaming external factors is a desirable character trait that fosters overall improvement.

“We don’t overreact to Lando’s style, which is tough on himself. I’m sure that’s something he will continue to refine over the years. But from Lando’s point of view, I think he drove very well throughout the weekend.”

McLaren Boss Defends Norris’s Conduct in Race. McLaren Boss Defends Norris’s Conduct in Race

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