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Norris: He was a great person, but it's different at Mercedes.

Norris: "He was a great person, but it's different at Mercedes".

30 June - 12:52 Last update: 13:10
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GPblog.com

Lando Norris looks back on growing up with friend George Russell, but says the British driver has changed since racing for Mercedes. Speaking to the Independent, he says Russell's 'fun side' is no longer visible.

Drivers should not be moulded

Norris says his parents, trainer and manager never tried to mould him. Now that the young Briton is driving in Formula One, he sees other drivers being shaped by, for example, the teams they work with. "I don’t think that is a good thing. It takes away their personality," Norris says.

As an example, he cites Russell, who has not driven at Williams since 2022, but at top team Mercedes. "He was a great person, but it is different at Mercedes – a different vibe and a different atmosphere. I just don’t see as fun a side of him," says the McLaren driver.

Pressure at Mercedes

Despite that, Norris praises his rival and calls Russell a great person. Norris also has a possible explanation for Russell's change, namely the pressure that comes with being Lewis Hamilton 's teammate in a big team like Mercedes.

According to Norris, you don't always want to be seen as someone who is constantly having fun and 'playing'. "On the other side there are no complaints because George is doing an amazing job this year, so it is working for him," Norris concludes positively.

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