Formula 1 Racing

Norris admits he “left the door open like an amateur” for Verstappen · RaceFans

Max Verstappen, Lando Norris, Red Bull Ring, 2024

Lando Norris blamed himself for failing to win the sprint race at the Red Bull Ring after allowing Max Verstappen to re-pass him for the lead.

The McLaren driver dived down the inside of Verstappen at turn three on lap five and took the lead. However Verstappen came back at him on the following straight and re-passed the McLaren as Norris chose not to defend the inside line for turn four.

That decision cost Norris double, as his team mate Oscar Piastri also seized the opportunity to attack and took second place off him. The top three finished in that order as Norris was unable to attack his team mate at the end of the race.

“Like I saw at the end, once things settle into much… once the tyres get too hot it’s difficult to do too much,” Norris exclained. “So I had to make the most of my opportunity.

“Then I messed it up and left the door open, like an amateur.”

“There’s probably some things I definitely should have done a bit better in my battle but I understand that,” he added.

“The pace of the car was very strong, especially at the end of the race. I had a good battle trying to get past Oscar, but just didn’t have enough speed with how much you lose in the middle sector with the dirty air.

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“So it was a good race. A good load of points for us as McLaren. So, a good job to the team.”

Norris isn’t convinced he would have been able to catch Verstappen had he regained the place he lost to Piastri.

“It was just too difficult to get past,” he said. “But the pace was good.

“I don’t think we would have had probably the pace to go with Max. I think he was maybe that little bit too quick for us today. But tomorrow is another day and I will try again.”

The McLaren pair kept Verstappen under pressure over the opening laps of the race which gave Norris confidence ahead of tomorrow’s grand prix.

“Like I said, there’s some things to improve, but we’re there and we can definitely give them a fight tomorrow.”

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