McLaren and I are strong again in Imola, victory number 2 possible!

On March 17, 2019, Lando Norris celebrated his debut in Formula 1. 110 races and 15 podiums later, his first victory. What happened next: Lots of joy, lots of partying, little sleep. Now Lando Norris’ focus is fully on Imola. McLaren is still the third best team, but the hope of victory on the favorite track is alive.

Lando Norris to Miami: Lots of partying, little sleep

“I celebrated according to the occasion,” smiles Lando Norris. “An incredible weekend that I will remember for the rest of my life!” First we celebrated with the team, then with other Formula 1 drivers and friends. Luckily this time there was no accident. Even though alcohol was involved.

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“Of course everyone had a little drink and had a good time. Which, in my opinion, was definitely allowed!” says the McLaren driver. We didn’t sleep until Monday evening. “It was a long few days, but it was definitely worth it.” Then we went to Augusta in the USA to play golf. “That’s when I delivered my best performance in golf – that was almost better than winning!”

Things could go well again in racing for Lando Norris in Imola. The 4.909 kilometer long track in Emilia Romagna suits McLaren better than Miami, and is one of Norris’ most successful circuits. The Brit was already on the podium in third place in 2021 and 2022. “But other teams also bring updates. We shouldn’t get arrogant,” he warns.

The last Formula 1 winners in Imola

Year winner P2 P3 Poles Nice. round
2020 Lewis Hamilton Valtteri Bottas Daniel Ricciardo Valtteri Bottas Lewis Hamilton
2021 Max Verstappen Lewis Hamilton Lando Norris Lewis Hamilton Lewis Hamilton
2022 Max Verstappen Sergio Perez Lando Norris Max Verstappen Max Verstappen

“Last week I was lucky with the safety car and our strategy worked perfectly,” emphasizes the Brit. McLaren is currently still slower than the leaders in Formula 1. “If we want to consistently challenge Ferrari and Red Bull, we need a little more.” Postscript: “But we’re getting closer and closer.”

McLaren: First victories, then world championship title in Formula 1

A few tenths more and, according to Norris, McLaren could be on pole and win again. “With the progress we’re making right now, there’s no reason why that shouldn’t be possible,” he says. But admits: “To be able to do that consistently is a different matter.” In the world championship, Lando Norris is currently in P4, McLaren in P3.

“We are still the third best team at the moment. But if we have another good weekend here, that could change,” says Lando Norris. Not to forget the steep development curve of the team from Woking. “We should be competing regularly for victories by next year at the latest. And then at some point for world championship titles.”

You can see here how motorsport expert Christian Danner assesses McLaren’s situation in the Formula 1 balance of power.

Is McLaren always a candidate for victory from now on? (06:25 mins)

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