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Why Did Lando Norris Choose to Stay at McLaren?

Norris Stands by McLaren: Loyalty Over Adversity?

13/04/2024

Lando Norris explains his loyalty to McLaren F1 amid early challenges and his decision to extend his contract.

Lando Norris explained why he didn’t consider leaving McLaren F1 despite the team’s struggles early last year. Eventually, the team rebounded, and he is now committed long-term after extending his contract.

“I didn’t even need to think about it because I still had a contract until 2025,” Norris stated.

“I wasn’t in a rush to do anything. And I knew a bit further down the line what was in the pipeline and what was potentially coming. That’s when things started to improve.”

“So I knew that for a while, the potential was there and it was the most significant step we had ever taken. But I didn’t think about it. I didn’t think ‘I have prepared a whole plan if things go well, and a whole plan if they go poorly.'”

“It was more like if the year ended and things weren’t going very well, or even a bit earlier, we would have started to think about it. But I’m not the type to project into the future.”

“I’m very happy doing what I need to do now and taking it one weekend at a time, rather than thinking ‘OK, I want to do this to ensure this is ready and that is ready.’ I’m not too concerned about that and I was happy with how I was behaving, so it wasn’t something I really needed to worry about.”

“I wasn’t in a rush to do anything. But the situation reversed, and success set in, with a good trend—a continuous trend—and that’s what encouraged me to stay even longer.”

A hesitation between loyalty and competitiveness

Norris wouldn’t be opposed to spending his entire career at McLaren, although he understands drivers who seek a new challenge: “I’ve thought about it. I would never say no, I think it’s always cool. But I would say that Lewis’s transfer is cool.”

“That’s all I would say. And I respect it. I thought it was a cool change to make. I’m not saying that’s exactly what I’d like, I’m not saying I want to go to Ferrari now, I’m just saying there are certain things that are just cool to do.”

“I’m in Formula 1 because I love racing, not for any other reason. I started because I loved it when I was six or seven years old, without knowing what would happen next. It’s still the same reason today: I do it because I love it. There are just all the bonuses that come with it now.”

“For me, the priority is always to enjoy it and do what I want, and the other things are just bonuses along the way, rather than thinking about something else. But I think it would be a beautiful story if I always stayed at McLaren. I like it, I love my team, I love the people I work with, I’m happy.”

“But there’s this second part of me that’s also a competitor, who wants to win. It’s about finding which is the most important at different times, and determining the right time to switch from ‘let’s go somewhere, I just want to enjoy and have fun’ to ‘I want to win races now, and I want to commit to doing this’.”

Why Did Lando Norris Choose to Stay at McLaren?

Why Did Lando Norris Choose to Stay at McLaren?. Why Did Lando Norris Choose to Stay at McLaren?

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