McLaren F1 team signs Lando Norris to its junior programme

McLaren has announced its junior programme line-up for the coming season, with 2016 McLaren Autosport BRDC Award winner Lando Norris becoming a fully-fledged protege of the team

McLaren F1 team signs Lando Norris to its junior programme

Norris, who will race in European F3 with Carlin this year, has already won four titles in car racing - in the British MSA F4 series, the off-season Toyota Racing Series in New Zealand and Formula Renault 2.0 categories Eurocup and NEC.

"I regard Lando as a fabulous prospect," said McLaren executive director Zak Brown.

"He blew the doors off his rivals in not one but three highly competitive race series last year, then capped that by establishing himself as the clear winner of the McLaren Autosport BRDC Award.

"It was an impressively mature performance, and we'll be developing him this year as part of our simulator team, whereby he'll be contributing directly and importantly to our Formula 1 campaign at the same time as honing and improving his technical feedback capabilities."

Norris had already sealed a McLaren affiliation as part of his prize for winning the 2016 Award, which included paid simulator work and a place in the team's fitness programme.

Also named in the programme are Honda junior Nobuharu Matsushita and long-standing McLaren protege Nyck de Vries.

Matsushita, a former Japanese F3 champion, will be contesting his third GP2 campaign with ART this year.

According to McLaren's statement, de Vries - who recently took part in a Ferrari shootout for a World Endurance Championship GT role 2017 - will have his schedule confirmed "shortly".

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