Norris insists rookie year in F1 wouldn't have been better with more tests

10-12-2019 08:10
by Matt Gretton
General
Norris insists rookie year in F1 wouldn't have been better with more tests

Across both 2017 and 2018, Lando Norris spent a significant amount of time driving the McLaren car. The British driver had an impressive rookie season in Formula 1 and eventually pipped his more experienced teammate, Carlos Sainz, in the qualifying duel. Norris insists his performance wouldn't have improved if he had more tests before. 

"I think even if I did another year of testing, I would have been the same. There's so many you can practice in pre-season testing and everything, but it still all changes when you're in the moment of doing qualifying and you're doing the race. The pressure, and racing people, it’s all very different to just testing. Sometimes I was fast in testing and I’d be just as quick as Fernando [Alonso] or just as quick as Stoffel [Vandoorne] and that gave me a bit of confidence," Norris explained to Dieter Rencken on RaceFans.net. 

"But it didn’t mean anything, it didn’t mean I would be going into Australia and be able to nail qualifying and then nail the race. It’s completely different. That’s why another year of testing wouldn’t have changed how I thought about any of that."

Norris eventually finished the season in 11th and played a significant role in pushing McLaren back towards the top of the constructors' championship. The Woking-based team will stick with the same line-up through the 2020 F1 season.

With more understanding and experience of the kind of pressures Norris mentions above, the Brit might be able to fine-tune his processes. While Sainz stepped on the podium once this season, McLaren will be trying to get more consistent with top six results. 

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