Monday, June 24, 2024

Another Podium Finish in Hungary ‘an Amazing Result’ for McLaren – Lando Norris

For the first time in his FIA Formula 1 World Championship career, Lando Norris secured back-to-back podium finishes, with the British racer claiming second place in the Hungarian Grand Prix.

Having started third on the grid at the Hungaroring, the McLaren F1 Team driver was able to pass team-mate Oscar Piastri after the first round of pit stops, and despite late pressure from Sergio Pérez, he was able to hang on to second place.

“Tough race. Not an easy one, especially with Pérez catching, but he didn’t have the pace to catch up in the end so I’m happy,” said Norris.  

“I had to fight for a little bit in the beginning after Turn One but another podium for us, for McLaren, it’s an amazing result.”

Norris says the progress McLaren have made with the development of their MCL60 is ‘amazing’, with their form completely different to where they had been just four or five races ago.

“I think we’re very happy with the progress we’ve made, to go from where we were four, five races ago, to be fighting for poles, and fighting for podiums, we’ll take it for now, and work hard to continue improving throughout the season,” added the Briton.

“We’ve shown great teamwork; everyone back in the factory did an amazing job and we’ll now look to take these recent performances to Belgium.”

Floor Damage Costs Piastri in Second and Third Stints

Team-mate Piastri jumped from fourth on the grid to second at the start, but floor damage meant the second half of his Hungarian Grand Prix was extremely difficult for him.

The Australian had made a good start to move ahead of Norris and Lewis Hamilton at turn one, and he also pushed Max Verstappen for the lead on that opening lap. 

However, with the floor damage on his MCL60, he was unable to maintain his place on the podium, with Norris, Pérez and Hamilton all able to jump ahead of him as he ended the day down in fifth.

“P5. Some positives to take from that race,” said Piastri.  “I think the big takeaway for me was working on tyre management.

“I struggled quite a lot in the second and third stint following some floor damage. So, yeah, a lot to learn from that one but to still end up with P5, with the challenges I had, is a very good result.”

Piastri says the fact McLaren were again competitive in Hungary as they were at Silverstone, a completely different style of circuit, bodes well for the team, and he hopes the momentum they’ve built can continue into the Belgian Grand Prix weekend.

“Obviously, a great day for the team again, everyone at track and back at the factory,” said the Australian.  “We have made decent steps forward in the last few races. The conditions this weekend have been a good test for us.

“To still be up there is a big confidence boost and we can look to take that momentum to Spa next week.”

Oscar Piastri struggled with floor damage in Hungary but still took fifth place – Credit: Zak Mauger / LAT Images, courtesy of Pirelli Motorsport