Norris: McLaren needs “whole package upgrade”

Lando Norris says his Formula 1 McLaren MCL36 needs a “whole package upgrade” in order to maintain competitive form over the balance of the season.

Norris: McLaren needs “whole package upgrade”

Since the team's troubled first event of 2022 in Bahrain, where both McLaren drivers finished outside the top 10, Norris has scored points in every race apart from Miami, where he had a collision with Pierre Gasly.

Norris says that the car has been good at most circuits, although he still has some concerns about particular types of corners and some upcoming circuits where the current car’s predecessor struggled last year.

“I think there are some slightly tougher areas,” said Norris. “I want to believe in general we've probably improved the car on average through all the tracks.

“I think there's still a few which we're yet to go to where we struggled a lot last season, and I think are different in terms of characteristics to all of the ones that we've been to. So places like Zandvoort, and things like that.

“We're still yet to explore all of the ranges of types of corners and tracks and so on. But I want to believe and I think I have some confidence in saying that we've improved the car throughout most of these areas. And what we need now is in general just a whole package upgrade, I think.”

Daniel Ricciardo, McLaren MCL36

Daniel Ricciardo, McLaren MCL36

While much of the focus this year has been on Daniel Ricciardo’s struggles to adjust to the new car, Norris says that he’s had his own issues in trying to adapt.

He’s hoping that some forthcoming updates will help to make the car suit him more.

“It's handling reasonably well,” he said. “But there's definitely types of characteristics that, I personally as a driver, I still want more from the car in, and it's just hard to go in that direction.

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"I think what Daniel and I want from the car is quite similar, but there's definitely differences in some driving styles and stuff, and I sometimes bias my car more one way than what he does.

“It's also down to personally how I feel I want to drive the car. And I believe there's good lap time in going in that direction. But it's just a hard thing to improve on, especially from one race to the next.

“But I think over the next races and next months, and hopefully when we can bring some more bits to the car, then we can move in that direction.”

Asked about the team’s place in the pecking order Norris indicated that the midfield is too close to make a definitive call.

"I think we've just been consistently good, especially since Bahrain, maybe not in Bahrain. But since then, we've just had a package which performs decently at every track, which is always a good thing, to be there every time, and to be in the points.

“I think we were probably ahead of Mercedes in Monaco. So around third, fourth, fifth, maybe sixth area, but I think it's a close group. So as long as we're towards the front of that, I'll be happy."

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