“I’m very pleased with myself”– Lando Norris gives a review to his roller-coaster weekend in Imola as he grabs a podium from a P7 start.
Lando Norris earned the respect of the Formula 1 fraternity when he made his compatriot Lewis Hamilton suffer for several laps, and in the end, he managed to have his podium.
According to Norris, he was pleased with his weekend performance, but he feels that the Q3 mistake was a huge blot to all the work he did, and things might have been different.
“On the whole, I’m very pleased with myself, but [also] the team as well,” said Norris. “I think apart from Q3, it was a pretty perfect weekend, I want to say,” he said.
“We improved the car a lot over the first couple of days from Friday into Saturday and through the sessions and so on. We didn’t start on the best foot, but we improved a lot.”
“I feel like I did an excellent job in qualifying; it was the first time I only had to do one run in both Q1 and Q2. So I did good enough laps to save the tyres, give myself a good opportunity into Q3 and be pretty close to pole position and then almost P3 and then get down to P7.
“So was near-perfect from my side and the team’s; I think we did an outstanding job. I was disappointed yesterday, so to come back to third today after a pretty eventful race for myself and I’m sure the others as well as rewarding for myself, but more importantly, the team.”
Decisions were on the spot.
Norris feels that his management’s decision to go on soft tyres were crucial, even though it couldn’t keep Hamilton away for long. Though, Norris also overused those tyres.
“It was tough,” said Norris. “We decided to go on the softs. I wasn’t so confident of getting the tyres working [and] it’s not an easy track to overtake on. Lewis might say otherwise.
“But it was, I think, the right decision. Apart from Max’s little moment, I thought Charles [Leclerc] was going to drive ahead of Max on the restart as he was off-track.”
“[He] didn’t take advantage of that, but he had a lot of wheelspin on the restart when Max went, and that’s the fault of the mediums and their decision.
“So we decided to go on the softs. I got a good launch, a good restart and got ahead of him. I pretty much started saving the tyres from lap one after the restart, knowing that the last couple of laps were going to be pretty tough. And they were, especially with Lewis at the end.
“A lot of focus in the last couple of corners, getting the deployment right, using the battery in the right way. So I was trying to save up as much as possible. But in the end, I didn’t have enough rear tyre out of the last two corners and the chicane to hold him behind. But I tried.
“It was a nice little battle. It’s nice to be racing unusual cars, I guess, for us – a Red Bull, a Mercedes and Ferraris, things like that. It’s nice to be going up against them, so hopefully, we can have some of that in the future.”