Lando Norris believes McLaren can open up the F1 title fight when they head to Monaco for Sunday’s Grand Prix.

The 24-year-old finished in the top two of the previous three grand prix, claiming his maiden victory in Miami.

He threatened to finish ahead of Max Verstappen for a second time at Imola last Sunday with a late charge, but finished within one second of the Red Bull driver.

Looking back at the Emilia Romagna Grand Prix, Norris said while he is sure he could have done things differently, he sticks by his choices.

"I did everything I believed was right at the time," Norris told Sky Sports.

"When it's so close you always think 'What really could I have done that little bit differently,' but you always could have done something a little bit better or a little bit differently. I'm sure Max could have reviewed things and said the same thing.

"But nice to know it wasn't an easy one for him. It's about time someone put him under pressure, and he felt a bit of nerves again because I'm sure he hasn't felt it for a while.

"I don't want to be overconfident - that's never been me - but we want to come into races now and be confident in racing against the Red Bull, racing against Ferrari because we are in the mix with them."

Before the race at Imola, Norris said he believed McLaren were not quite ready to challenge Red Bull for the title this year.

The Briton currently sits fourth in the standings, 60 points behind Verstappen, but he now thinks they can count themselves in the running this year.

"We're a third of the way through so we have a very long way to go, so I think many, many things can happen," he added.

"But also, Monaco is a place where anything can happen. So, I would never say 'no' anymore.

"I've got fed up of myself kind of underestimating what we can achieve as a team. So, we're going to come in, we're positive, we've had a very good run of results - second, first, second - and there's no reason why we shouldn't be able to continue that here in Monaco.

"It's not known to be our best track but, at the same time, anything can happen."

Lewis Hamilton would choose Andrea Kimi Antonelli to take his Mercedes seat when he makes the move to Ferrari next year.

In February, Hamilton stunned the Formula One world by announcing he was exercising a break clause in his contract with the Silver Arrows and would join Ferrari from 2025. 

Several drivers have been linked with the upcoming vacancy at Mercedes, including world champion Max Verstappen, though he is thought likely to stay with Red Bull for next season.

Carlos Sainz – who will lose his Ferrari seat to Hamilton – has also been tipped as a potential candidate, but Hamilton thinks 17-year-old prodigy Antonelli deserves a chance.

"Carlos is a great driver, so wherever he goes I think he would be a positive for any team," Hamilton said of Sainz. 

"Honestly, I have no idea what Toto [Wolff]'s plans are, but for me, taking on a youngster, I would probably take on Kimi."

Antonelli has been part of Mercedes' junior team since 2019 and currently competes for Prema Racing in Formula Two, sitting sixth in the drivers' championship standings after four rounds of the 2024 season.

Speaking at Sunday's Emilia Romagna Grand Prix, team principal Wolff hinted the teenager was under serious consideration for next year.

"I guess for the Italians it's super exciting to have Lewis Hamilton in red next year. We will get used to the outfits, but we have got to look at ourselves," he said.

"Maybe there is an option where we can shine more with an Italian in our car, so we're pushing back hard."

Lando Norris is excited to see McLaren emerging as the foremost challengers to Red Bull, after he narrowly missed out on a second straight win at the Emilia Romagna Grand Prix.

Norris started second at Imola on Sunday as a grid penalty dropped his McLaren team-mate Oscar Piastri to fifth. 

It initially looked like Norris might face a battle for second as Charles Leclerc closed on him, but he found extraordinary pace late on as leader Max Verstappen started to struggle.

Verstappen complained of grip problems over team radio as Norris drew within 0.7 seconds of the world champion by the final lap, but he was just unable to pass him in a tense finish.

"It hurts me to say it, but one or two more laps and I think I would have had him," Norris told Sky Sports. 

"It's tough. I just lost out too much to Max in the beginning. He was stronger in the first stint.

"We are at a point now where we can say we are in a position with Ferrari and Red Bull. We have to get used to it. We are fighting for first and second now.

"It is still a surprise to say we are disappointed not to win, but it is what we should start to expect."

Norris has now managed four podium finishes in the last five races, and he sits fourth in the drivers' championship standings, six points behind Sergio Perez in third.

He finished second at the Chinese Grand Prix last month, then beat Verstappen to claim his first race win in Miami in early May, benefitting from effective upgrades to McLaren's MCL38 car.

"Hopefully, it continues like that because it's exciting, it's tough, and it gets you excited every weekend, so I'm looking forward to the next few," he said.

"We also had a second in China, so we've had second, first, second, and I think that’s a good sign."

Max Verstappen held off a charging Lando Norris on the final lap to get back to winning ways at the Emilia Romagna Grand Prix on Sunday.

Having equalled Ayrton Senna's record of eight successive pole positions on Saturday, the three-time world champion initially looked set for a comfortable victory.

It looked like third might be the best Norris could manage, but the Briton found great pace late on and ultimately challenged for the win, as Verstappen expressed frustration over Red Bull team radio, saying he was struggling for grip when turning.

Norris pulled within 0.7 seconds of Verstappen on the final lap, but he was ultimately unable to follow up his win at the Miami Grand Prix last time out as the drivers' championship leader clung on.

Charles Leclerc captured third for Ferrari in front of an enthusiastic Italian crowd, with Oscar Piastri finishing fourth after his grid penalty meant he started the race fifth instead of second.

Carlos Sainz was fifth ahead of Mercedes duo Lewis Hamilton and George Russell, with Verstappen's team-mate Sergio Perez only managing eighth, meaning he now trails Leclerc in the standings.

Data debrief: Verstappen follows Schumacher 

On Saturday, Verstappen became the first driver with back-to-back poles at Imola since Michael Schumacher in 2002 and 2003. One day later, he became just the second driver to win on three successive visits to the track, after the German achieved that feat between 2002 and 2004.

Verstappen is also into the top six in the all-time F1 charts for podium finishes, his 104th here moving him ahead of Kimi Raikkonen outright in the rankings.

Oscar Piastri insists he is still targeting a podium finish, despite receiving a grid penalty ahead of the Emilia Romagna Grand Prix.

The McLaren driver had initially qualified in second place behind Drivers' Championship leader Max Verstappen, with the Australian's teammate Lando Norris in third.

However, Piastri has since been handed a three-place grid drop after he impeded Kevin Magnussen while exiting the pits during Q1.

The 23-year-old admitted he could not see Magnusson at the chicane at Turns 2 and 3, and tried to get clear of the Dane as quickly as possible, though the steward's review highlighted McLaren's failure to give him sufficient warning that a faster car was approaching.

Nevertheless, Piastri did not let the penalty detract from a generally positive display during qualifying, which subsequently sees Norris take second place on the grid, with the Ferrari pair of Charles Leclerc and Carlos Sainz leapfrogging him to third and fourth respectively.

"I'm really happy with the performance today," he said. "We were so close to pole on track.

"I've been really comfortable with the car from the moment we put it on track yesterday, and I am enjoying my first GP weekend here. We've definitely been on the pace all weekend and confidence is high.

"It is a shame to lose the front row and having to start from P5 as it’s not the easiest track to overtake on. However, we will try our best to recover some positions and fight to finish on the podium."

Max Verstappen takes pole position at the Emilia Romagna Grand Prix, equalling Ayrton Senna’s record in the process.

It is Verstappen’s eighth consecutive pole in Formula One after he recorded a best time of 1:14.746 around the track in the final qualification session for Sunday’s race.

The Dutchman will share the front row with Oscar Piastri, though he may receive a penalty for impeding Kevin Magnussen in Q1.

Piastri’s McLaren team-mate Lando Norris finished just behind him in third, while the two Ferraris, Charles Leclerc and Carlos Sainz, rounded out the top five after failing to build on their strong starts.

Red Bull’s Sergio Perez failed to make it past Q2 after dropping to 11th, while Fernando Alonso was forced to pit before the end of Q3, finishing last. 

Mercedes team principal Toto Wolff has refused to rule out meeting with Max Verstappen to discuss a potential switch from Red Bull, though he says the Silver Arrows are also looking at other drivers.

Verstappen looks unlikely to be denied a fourth straight world championship after starting 2024 with four wins from six races, though he was beaten by Lando Norris at Sunday's Miami Grand Prix.

However, the Dutchman's future has become a subject of discussion amid a difficult period for Red Bull behind the scenes.

Team principal Christian Horner was accused and later cleared of engaging in controlling behaviour towards a female employee earlier this year, while chief technical officer Adrian Newey is stepping back from his role and will be free to join another team in early 2025.

While Verstappen's contract with Red Bull runs through 2028, reports have suggested he could follow in the footsteps of Lewis Hamilton and exercise a break clause to push through a huge move.

Ferrari's Carlos Sainz has also been linked with Mercedes after seeing the Scuderia promise his 2025 seat to Hamilton, and Wolff says the team have plenty of irons in the fire.

Asked if he was keen to meet with Verstappen, Wolff said: "There's always plenty of meetings. I can't really say about the second driver. I think we've talked about the possibilities. 

"I want to be fair to these guys and not make it look like we are playing chess with humans, because we are not doing that.

"I think we want to take our time, see where Max's thinking goes, and at the same time monitor the other drivers. Carlos was very strong in Miami again and that's why we are a little bit on observation mode at the moment."

Verstappen has said the strength of teams' cars after regulation changes are implemented in 2026 will inform any decision on his future, and Wolff says the Dutchman is right to bide his time. 

"I was him I wouldn't leave, at least for 2025, but he's the leading driver, he's the top guy at the moment and that's why it's for him to take those decisions," Wolff said.

"There may not be any decisions to take, maybe everything continues like it is, but that is then also guidance for us."

Max Verstappen believes Lando Norris' victory at the Miami Grand Prix will not be his last in Formula One, having been unable to match the McLaren star's pace in Florida.

Norris took his maiden F1 victory at the Miami International Autodrome, racing from fifth on the grid to finish seven seconds clear of three-time world champion Verstappen.

Verstappen started on pole but struggled to match Norris' pace on the hard tyres as he failed to win a race for just the second time this season.

The Red Bull driver has four victories in six outings in 2024, having retired at the Australian Grand Prix in March as Ferrari's Carlos Sainz took the spoils.

Speaking after Sunday's race, Verstappen said: "You win, you lose. We're all used to that in racing, right? Today was a bit tricky.

"I think already on the medium tyres it didn't feel fantastic, we were pulling away but not like it should be. Then once we made a pit stop I heard the lap times McLaren were doing and I was like, 'Well, that's pretty quick!'

"Once they also switched onto the hard tyre, they just had more pace, especially Lando – he was flying. It was incredibly difficult for us on that stint, but if a bad day is P2 I'll take it.

"I'm very happy for Lando, it's been a long time coming and it's not going to be his last one, so he definitely deserves it today."

Some have suggested McLaren may be the most likely team to challenge Red Bull's dominance this year, having arrived in Miami with a raft of upgrades to their MCL38 car.

Asked whether Sunday's race was a true representation of McLaren's pace, Verstappen said: "I hope not! 

"They came with an upgrade, for sure it looks like it works so we have a bit of work to do from our side.

"I think it definitely wasn't our strongest weekend in terms of race pace, but we'll analyse it all and try to come back stronger."

Lando Norris said it was “about time” after he claimed his maiden Formula 1 victory in the Miami Grand Prix on Sunday.

The 24-year-old started the race in fifth but took the chequered flag with a seven-second advantage over Max Verstappen, who had taken pole position.

Norris capitalised with a timely pit stop behind the safety car following a crash between Kevin Magnussen and Logan Sargeant, who was unable to finish the race.

Verstappen had led for the first 29 laps despite missing the chicane on lap 21 and hitting a bollard, but when the race restarted with 27 remaining, he struggled to keep pace with Norris, who was the quickest car on the track.

Charles Leclerc rounded out the podium, pipping his Ferrari team-mate Carlos Sainz to third, with Sergio Perez just beating Lewis Hamilton to a top-five finish.

After getting his first win in his 110th F1 race, Norris was quick to praise his team for their hard work in the process.

Speaking to Sky Sports, he said: "About time! What a race. It's been a long time coming. Finally, I've managed to do it.

"I'm so happy for my whole team. I finally delivered for them. Long day, tough race. Finally, on top, so I'm over the moon.

"Thanks to McLaren, everyone. I'll give a shout-out to my mum and dad, of course.

"I'm just proud. A lot of people doubted me along the way. I've made a lot of mistakes over my last five years in my short career, but today we put it altogether.

"This is all for the team. I stuck with McLaren because I could believe in them and do believe in them. Today we proved exactly that." 

Max Verstappen continued to be critical of his own performance despite taking pole position for the Miami Grand Prix.

Verstappen, who won the sprint earlier on Saturday and had on Friday claimed pole in qualifying for that event, recorded a best time of 1:27.241 round the track in the final qualification session for Sunday's race.

The reigning Formula One world champion will share the front row with Ferrari's Charles Leclerc, who like in the sprint, came second.

Leclerc's team-mate Carlos Sainz pipped Red Bull's Sergio Perez to third, while Lando Norris rounded out the top five.

Verstappen, though, was not particularly thrilled with his drive, continuing the trend after both qualifying on Friday and the sprint race.

He said: "We definitely improved the car a bit but I don’t know what it is but every single year we come here I find it extremely difficult to be very consistent with the car and tyre feeling over one lap. It’s super hard to make sure that Sector One feels good and Sector Three at the end of the lap to make that happen together is incredibly tough.

"Again today it was really about finding that balance, I think we did ok, it wasn't the most enjoyable lap out of my career especially with how slippery it is and you aren't very confident on the lap but we are on pole."

Leclerc said: "I felt so much on the limit. It was very close until Q3, where we started to push for the last one or two tenths. We started to lose the tyres in sector two and three, overheating them quite a bit. That's where we lost a little bit of time.

"However, the race is long and this morning we showed a good pace, so I hope tomorrow we can put Max under a bit more pressure."

Lewis Hamilton recovered from a 20-second penalty in the sprint race to qualify in seventh, one place behind Mercedes team-mate George Russell.

Formula One world champion Max Verstappen claimed victory in the sprint race ahead of the Miami Grand Prix.

Verstappen clinched pole for the sprint in Friday's qualifying session, and capitalised on that effort to finish ahead of Ferrari's Charles Leclerc on Saturday.

The Dutchman had to see off an early push from Leclerc, but ultimately had too much.

Sergio Perez, Verstappen's Red Bull team-mate, recovered from an early mistake to finish third.

Daniel Ricciardo took fourth, having fended off the challenge of both Carlos Sainz and Oscar Piastri.

It was a bad drive for Lewis Hamilton, who was penalised for speeding in the pit lane, dropping him from eighth down to 16th.

Formula One world champion Max Verstappen was surprised to claim pole position for Saturday's sprint race at the Miami Grand Prix.

Verstappen was 0.108 seconds faster than Ferrari's Charles Leclerc in Friday's qualifying session.

That is despite the Dutchman believing his drive had not gone well at all.

"To be honest, it felt really terrible," said Verstappen, who holds a 25-point lead at the top of the F1 drivers' championship.

"Maybe that last session was just incredibly difficult to get the tyres to work. I didn't really improve a lot on the soft but somehow we were first.

"Practice felt really nice, it felt like the car was in a really good window but in qualifying it didn’t feel like that anymore. I was really not happy.

"In Q3 I saw I was only going 0.2secs faster and I was sliding around, no grip and they told me it was P1 and I thought it must be a joke but we'll take it."

Verstappen's Red Bull team-mate Sergio Perez qualified third for the sprint, which will take place ahead of the main qualifying session for Sunday's race.

Lewis Hamilton says it would be "a privilege" to work with Adrian Newey if the designer chooses to join Ferrari following his departure from Red Bull.

Newey, who has been with Red Bull since 2006, will leave the team in early 2025 and is free to join a rival team ahead of the 2026 season.

Ferrari are thought to be favourites to get his signature ahead of the impending arrival of seven-time world champion Hamilton.

Asked about the possibility of pairing up with Newey, who is widely regarded as the greatest designer in Formula One history, Hamilton said: "If I was to do a list of people I would love to work with, he would absolutely be at the top of it.

"Any team would be fortunate to have the opportunity to work with him.

"Adrian has got such a great history and track record. He's obviously done an amazing job through his career and engaging with teams and the knowledge he has. I think he would be an amazing addition.

"Ferrari have already got a great team. They are already making huge progress and strides – their car is quicker this year.

"He [Newey] would be a privilege to work with."

Newey informed Red Bull he wanted to leave after a tumultuous period behind the scenes for the Formula One constructors' champions.

At the start of the season, controversy surrounded team principal Christian Horner as he was accused of engaging in inappropriate controlling behaviour towards a female member of staff, accusations he denied and was cleared of following an independent investigation. 

World champion Max Verstappen said he does not blame Newey for leaving Red Bull.

"I would have preferred, of course, for Adrian to stay," Verstappen told Sky Sports.

"But at the end of the day, and that's what I also said to Adrian, you have to do what you think is best for yourself, because at the end of the day, F1 is a bit of a shark tank. And I think it's very important that you do think about yourself, that you make the right decisions for yourself and your family.

"So I also don't blame him. If someone wants to leave, you go and pursue other goals or things in life, so that's absolutely fine."

Christian Horner has knocked back criticism that Max Verstappen’s stranglehold on Formula One is “boring” by describing his star driver’s unstoppable form as a “golden moment”.

Verstappen claimed his fourth win from the five rounds so far this season with a commanding drive at Sunday’s Chinese Grand Prix to establish a 25-point championship lead.

The Dutch driver has failed to triumph at only two of the last 23 races staged in the sport, and he is the overwhelming favourite to secure a fourth world crown in as many seasons.

Speaking prior to Sunday’s race, Lando Norris, who finished runner-up to Verstappen in Shanghai, admitted that seeing the “same driver win without a fight is boring”, and a “turn-off” for fans.

But addressing claims that Verstappen’s dominance is damaging the sport, Red Bull team principal Horner said: “You have to appreciate success. Max is a special talent and this is a golden moment for him.

“As we have seen with every single driver in the past, it doesn’t last forever. It is about enjoying the moment and being in the moment and there are no guarantees we can give him a car like this for the next five years.

“Max is just a metronome. The pace he showed last year, he has continued that through.

“And since the last Chinese Grand Prix in 2019, he has won 50 per cent of all the races. He has won 21 out of the last 23 races. He is in fantastic form, at one with the car and the team and enjoying his racing.”

Verstappen also won the first sprint round of the season in Shanghai.

The dash to the chequered flag took place before qualifying for Sunday’s main event in a rejig this year.

Verstappen, 26, has often criticised the format, and although he agreed the new schedule is better than in previous years, he urged F1 bosses not to increase the number of sprints – which is set at six this season.

“The sprint format was more straightforward that it has been but let’s not overdo it,” said the triple world champion.

“We are already doing 24 races in a season and six of these sprint events, too. I guess it sells better and the television audience numbers increase, but it also increases the pressure on the mechanics to ensure everything is tip-top.

“So, we have to deal with it, but let’s not now think that we need 12 of these (sprints) because it will take its toll on people in the sport.”

Max Verstappen powered to another dominant win in Sunday’s Chinese Grand Prix – as Lewis Hamilton complained his car was “slow” and “broken” after he finished ninth.

Verstappen emerged unscathed from two safety car periods to secure his 38th win from the last 49 staged in Formula One on his unstoppable march towards a fourth straight championship.

But for Hamilton, now 50 races and 868 long days without a victory, this marked another sobering afternoon in his uncompetitive Mercedes.

McLaren’s Lando Norris delivered an impressive performance to finish second, one place ahead of Verstappen’s Red Bull team-mate Sergio Perez, with Charles Leclerc and Carlos Sainz fourth and fifth for Ferrari.

George Russell could manage only sixth for Mercedes as the grid’s once-dominant team endured another race to forget.

F1 is back in Shanghai following a five-year absence, and it was a venue that Hamilton once ruled, winning a record six times here.

But the sport has a new king now, with Verstappen securing his fourth win from the opening five rounds – his only downfall in Australia when his Red Bull engine expired. For Hamilton, hampered by starting only 18th, his worst-ever season continued.

As Verstappen blasted away from his marks to convert his pole position into an all-too predictable early lead, Hamilton was evidently struggling for speed in his Mercedes.

Hamilton started on the quickest, but less durable soft rubber, but just two laps into this 56-lap affair, his complaints began.

“I am making no ground on this tyre,” he said after dropping from 18th to 19th. Hamilton made the first of his two pit-stops on lap nine, and re-joined back in 19th, 53 seconds behind Verstappen.

“That was the worst tyre, man,” said the despondent 39-year-old after switching to the medium rubber.

Up front and Fernando Alonso, who moved from third to second following a fine move around the outside of Perez at the opening bend, was starting to slip down the order.

On lap five, Perez sailed past the evergreen Spaniard, before Norris swooped ahead at the penultimate corner two laps later.

Back to Hamilton, and he was now 15th after making his way ahead of RB’s Yuki Tsunoda at the first bend. But his mood had not improved.

“I can’t even catch him (Alpine’s Esteban Ocon), man,” he said. This car is so slow.”

Speed has not been a problem for Verstappen since he denied Hamilton a record eighth crown at the 2021 decider in Abu Dhabi.

Temporarily demoted to third by virtue of changing tyres earlier than his competitors, the Red Bull star breezed past Leclerc on lap 16 before re-taking the lead from Norris three laps later.

Hamilton’s fortunes improved on lap 21 when he stopped for a second time with the VSC deployed after Valtteri Bottas broke down. And as the marshals struggled to shift Bottas’ stricken Stake, the VSC was upgraded to a full safety car, promoting Hamilton up the order. He would be 12th at the re-start, but he was still bemused by his machine.

“The car is just sliding around everywhere,” he said. “It just feels like something is broken. It is really bad.”

In came the safety car on lap 26, but it was back out moments later after Aston Martin’s Lance Stroll clumsily thudded into the back of Daniel Ricciardo, and Kevin Magnussen punted Yuki Tsuonda off.

Ricciardo suffered floor damage, elevating Hamilton into 10th and a single-point paying position before he swatted Haas’ Nico Hulkenberg aside for ninth on lap 41.

Hamilton was then up to eighth as Alonso made a maverick third stop for tyres. But the 43-year-old took advantage of his fresh rubber to blast back through the field, relegating Hamilton back to ninth with seven laps remaining. Alonso would cross the line in seventh.

Verstappen took the chequered flag 13.7 sec clear of Norris to extend his championship lead to 25 points with Hamilton – almost one minute behind his one-time rival – still searching for a top-six finish this season.

Page 1 of 34
© 2023 SportsMaxTV All Rights Reserved.