Norris ‘expecting pain’ as McLaren sits ‘a long way off’

Lando Norris is “expecting pain” after McLaren’s difficult start to the Formula 1 season in Bahrain, believing the team is currently “a long, long way off”.

Norris ‘expecting pain’ as McLaren sits ‘a long way off’

McLaren entered the 2022 season looking to build on a strong campaign last year, highlighted by its first win for almost nine years at the Italian Grand Prix at Monza.

But the team endured a difficult race in Bahrain as its cars finished 14th and 15th, with Daniel Ricciardo leading home Norris.

After qualifying 13th, Norris fell backwards during the race, slipping all the way to last position after making his first pitstop.

The McLaren driver gained two places in the closing laps after the Red bull duo of Sergio Perez and Max Verstappen were sidelined by fuel pump issues, giving him 15th spot.

Norris admitted he was putting on “a brave face” upon arriving at the media pen after the race in Bahrain, and that it “looked just as bad as what it felt” out on-track.

“It’s just where we are, quite simply,” Norris explained.

“We just have to get a little bit used to it now. Of course over the last few seasons, [there has been] just a lot of expectation from us within the team, and also everyone else watching and so on.

“We just haven’t got it right at the minute. We’re a long, long way off - not just a little bit, we’re a long way. We’ve got to start fresh and figure some things out.

“I’m just trying to find solutions, and solutions doesn’t mean next week we’re going to be amazing.

“But in months to come we need to understand what’s going on here and how to get better.”

Lando Norris, McLaren

Lando Norris, McLaren

Photo by: Steven Tee / Motorsport Images

Norris added that he was “expecting pain” and that “everyone needs to know there’s probably going to be a bit of pain” given McLaren’s current performance standing.

“We’ve been in this position a few years ago,” he said. “I’m hoping we can remain more optimistic that the team and everyone back at MTC can figure things out and we can get back on track.”

Read Also:

All three Mercedes customer teams struggled on race day in Bahrain, with their complement of six cars being the last to take the chequered flag.

Asked if straight-line speed or engine power was the main limitation McLaren faced, Norris said that while it was “definitely not helping”, the fact the factory Mercedes cars could finish third and fourth proved there were greater issues at hand for McLaren.

“We’re a long way down on downforce, the handling therefore is very poor,” Norris said. “It’s a tricky car and tricky tyres to optimise, and when you just don’t have the downforce, you just can’t get the tyres working well and you just can’t get everything in a good window.

“You’re understeering, you’re oversteering, there’s just a lot more things going on. I think that’s the problem. We just need less things to be going on.

“[We] need more rear, more front, it’s just downforce really - it so sounds simple but it’s obviously complicated to figure out.”

shares
comments
Leclerc joked with Ferrari pits about last lap F1 engine problem
Previous article

Leclerc joked with Ferrari pits about last lap F1 engine problem

Next article

10 things we learned from the 2022 Bahrain Grand Prix

10 things we learned from the 2022 Bahrain Grand Prix
How the FIA should punish any breaches of the F1 cost cap Plus

How the FIA should punish any breaches of the F1 cost cap

OPINION: On Wednesday, the FIA will issue F1 teams with compliance certificates if they stuck to the 2021 budget cap. But amid rumours of overspending, the governing body must set a critical precedent. It needs to carefully pick between revisiting the bitterness of Abu Dhabi, a contradictory punishment and ensuring parity for the rest of the ground-effect era

Singapore Grand Prix Driver Ratings 2022 Plus

Singapore Grand Prix Driver Ratings 2022

A testing return to the Singapore Grand Prix in tricky conditions created plenty of hazards and mistakes for the Formula 1 drivers to fall into. That partly explains a number of low scores, including from a handful of high profile runners, allowing others to take a starring role under the floodlights

Formula 1
Oct 3, 2022
The two key contributors to Leclerc's defeat to Perez in F1's 2022 Singapore GP Plus

The two key contributors to Leclerc's defeat to Perez in F1's 2022 Singapore GP

In a marathon Formula 1 Singapore Grand Prix, Sergio Perez’s victory was only assured hours after the race due to a stewards investigation. Throughout the contest the Red Bull driver impressively held off Ferrari’s Charles Leclerc in changing conditions to see the Mexican pull out enough of an advantage to negate his post-race penalty

Formula 1
Oct 3, 2022
The time-honoured manufacturer model that can't apply to all F1 teams Plus

The time-honoured manufacturer model that can't apply to all F1 teams

What happens, asks MATT KEW, if the old adage of win on a Sunday, sell on a Monday is no longer true for F1 manufacturers?

Formula 1
Oct 2, 2022
Why is Oscar Piastri F1's most sought-after rookie? Plus

Why is Oscar Piastri F1's most sought-after rookie?

The Australian rising star is fast, consistent, confident, adaptable and has shown excellent racecraft, but there’s already a taint to his reputation. That hasn’t stopped him becoming the hottest property in this year’s F1 driver market and why McLaren moved fast to snap up the 21-year-old

Formula 1
Sep 30, 2022
The unintended benefit that F1's new engine rules era will deliver Plus

The unintended benefit that F1's new engine rules era will deliver

Formula 1's incoming engine rules shake-up has multiple targets. But it may also solve what has been a bone of contention since the hybrids arrived in 2014. The new plan will allow the series to pump up the volume

Formula 1
Sep 29, 2022
How de Vries made himself impossible to ignore for a belated F1 chance Plus

How de Vries made himself impossible to ignore for a belated F1 chance

Nyck de Vries appeared to have missed his opportunity to break into Formula 1 as he was passed over for more exciting talents who have now become frontrunners and title fighters. But after catching the eye outside of the F1 sphere, before his stunning impromptu grand prix debut in Italy, will it lead to a delayed full-time race seat?

Formula 1
Sep 29, 2022
Can Hamilton produce another Singapore magic moment? Plus

Can Hamilton produce another Singapore magic moment?

The Singapore Grand Prix has, explains BEN EDWARDS, played an important role in Lewis Hamilton’s Formula 1 career. As the series returns to the Marina Bay Street Circuit for the first time in three years, he faces the latest challenge with an underperforming Mercedes car

Formula 1
Sep 28, 2022