Sunday, June 23, 2024

Norris Keen to Continue Recent McLaren Form Resurgence at ‘Challenging’ Zandvoort

Lando Norris says he is feeling the excitement to get back to racing this weekend at the Circuit Zandvoort as the FIA Formula 1 World Championship season resumes after the summer break with the Dutch Grand Prix.

The McLaren F1 Team made some big gains with the development of its MCL60 during the first half of the year, the team struggling to break into the points at all before updates brought to the car for the Austrian Grand Prix made it a contender for the podium.

Norris took two back-to-back second place finishes in the British and Hungarian Grand Prix, and although the pace of the car was not as strong in Belgium, he was still able to take home a seventh place finish to ensure the team were clear in fifth place in the Constructors’ Championship.

“We’re back! I had a great time over the summer break, spending time with friends and family, and of course I played some golf too,” said Norris.  “I’m now feeling refreshed and ready to go racing again as we head straight into a double-header.

“First up, Zandvoort. It’s a really fun circuit to drive with lots of banking allowing for different racing lines. There’s always a great atmosphere there as well, which makes the weekend even more exciting.

“The team have done a great job of improving the car over the first part of the season, and I’ve been back in the factory this week working with the team to try and ensure we can keep that momentum up.

“Despite this being a challenging track, we aim to do our best and continue bringing in points for the team.”

“Zandvoort is a new track for me” – Oscar Piastri

Team-mate Oscar Piastri also impressed once the updates to the MCL60 were implemented, although the Australian is yet to achieve his first main race podium finish of his career.

Piastri did have a breakthrough weekend at Spa-Francorchamps last time out and secured his maiden top three finish in the Sprint race, although his Sunday race was over on lap one after contact with both the inside wall and Carlos Sainz Jr. at turn one led to a damaged car.

Zandvoort is a track that Piastri has never driven before, and he has been working hard in the simulator to prepare him for the challenge, and he is ready to bring home some more good points for the team.

“I’m looking forward to getting back to racing after some time off for the summer break,” said Piastri.  “I had a nice time away on holiday, enjoying the sun and I feel recharged ahead of going into this second half of the season.

“Next up is the Dutch GP. Zandvoort is a new track for me, so I’ve been working hard in the sim with the engineers to get as prepared as possible for the weekend. I’m feeling ready and excited to get back into the car and see all the Papaya fans in the stands.

“Let’s bring home good results.”

Oscar Piastri has never driven at Zandvoort before – Credit: McLaren F1 Team