McLaren F1 The Race to Rival Red Bull

Norris: ‘Perfection Needed’ to Outrace Verstappen


Norris reveals the challenge to best Verstappen as McLaren F1 learns tactics to combat Red Bull.

Lando Norris was questioned about his recent podium finishes, to determine whether he considers them missed victories or opportunities well seized. The McLaren F1 driver acknowledges that it’s possible to see it both ways.

“It depends on how you think, you can see it in both ways. We scored a lot of points and performed very well with the team. But we are competitors, we want to win, and knowing what was possible, I always think about what could have been the best outcome, which was potentially winning races,” said the British driver.

“It’s potentially, because we are at a level where everything must be perfect, we’re up against one of the best drivers in history who is at an incredible level. And if everything is not perfect, like my start last week, you pay the price.”

“Maybe a lost victory last weekend, but that happens. Many drivers have lost races where they were the fastest due to minor errors, even though they did everything perfectly.”

“It depends on your mentality. I think I lost all the races, but you have to think about the positives, the level we need to be at, and we were at 99%. I am overall happy but also disgusted because I am here to win and we are frustrated when we lose, but we also beat 18 other cars on the grid and we have to be happy about that.”

Norris explains that he now has different priorities since he aims for victory every weekend.

“I’ve thought about these things, things I wasn’t thinking about five years ago, two years ago, or even a year ago. Things that were at the bottom of the list and details that are now at the top of the list. We need to restructure things.”

“My start last week wasn’t bad, it was just worse than it needed to be. There are things I want to work on, things the team wants to work on to do better.”

“I’m not at the level where I want to be but I am at a good level, the team is at a very good level, but we are fighting against a driver who has won multiple championships, they know these things and have managed them longer than we have. But we are catching up. We will make mistakes, we won’t do everything perfectly.”

The British driver nonetheless sees a positive trend emerging for achieving more victories in the upcoming second half of the season.

“Red Bull is gradually losing ground and we could continue to gain on them and win races. I really think it’s possible with the team’s performance and my own. But we are up against one of the best drivers of all time in F1 and one of the most effective teams in F1, and then there are all the others who can easily join the battle.”

“I have won only one race. It’s always incredible, but it all depends on what you know you are capable of achieving. In this position, you simply want to win and therefore you are disappointed when you don’t. I think it’s as simple as that. And a win in F1 means a lot, because it’s what I’ve been dreaming of since I was a child.”

Oscar Piastri reflects on his bad weekend in Spain, explaining that he doesn’t think about the raw results but just wants to do his best.

“Some setup decisions weren’t right, and my driving was also at the root of my issues. But small differences led to significant consequences.”

“We have clear answers about what went wrong last week and that’s encouraging. I start each weekend wanting to maximize what I have, and the championship will sort itself out. I know that small errors can have big consequences, and the mindset is to maximize everything.”

He would also like to challenge Verstappen’s Red Bull but admits that the Austrian team is very difficult to unsettle.

“I don’t think we have ever underestimated their operational strength. For instance, their pit stops have always probably been the best in the paddock. We set the world record but they have always been incredibly strong and consistent on this front.”

“In terms of strategy, they have always been very strong as well. Even if we have a car as fast as theirs, it’s difficult to beat them, which turns out to be the case. Maybe some people have underestimated their strength, but we certainly have not.”

McLaren F1 The Race to Rival Red Bull

McLaren F1: The Race to Rival Red Bull McLaren F1: The Race to Rival Red Bull


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