Lando Norris took aim at Aston Martin after the 2023 United States Grand Prix, where his third-place means McLaren overtake Fernando Alonso‘s team for fourth in the constructors’ championship.
It’s an overtake no one could’ve predicted after the season-opening Bahrain GP, where Alonso took third while Norris was forced to make six pit stops and Oscar Piastri became the first retirement of 2023.
But it’s been a different story since McLaren introduced their revolutionary upgrade to both cars at Silverstone, they’ve notched eight podiums in nine races compared to just one for Aston Martin.
“Aston, I just don’t know,” Norris told the media post-race. “They seem to have made the car slower and slower with every upgrade that they bought.
“They [Red Bull] were racing Aston in the beginning of the year and I didn’t know where they finished today but you know, they were out in Q1 and then they’ve been struggling.
“So I don’t know what their issues are but they were very strong, they had a lot of points in the first half of the season, the second half they’ve been struggling and for us it’s vice versa.”
Norris: Amazing day despite win
Norris started the US GP in second and took the lead at the first corner – the fifth time that’s happened in the last six races – but never returned to the front after his first pit stop.
He was disappointed over team radio post-race with McLaren making the wrong strategy call against Max Verstappen, but seemed more buoyant after the podium celebrations.
Norris added: “I think the main thing is when you look at where we were, how bad Bahrain was for us, how many seconds off pole we were, my six pitstops in the first race of the season, I lost my power unit straightaway.
“So things which just set us on the back foot from the beginning and when you look at where we are now to be fighting against a Red Bull who was an unrealistic target for almost anyone and fighting against a Mercedes.
“As much as we are disappointed that we couldn’t go for the race win, when you put it in perspective of where we were and how much we’ve improved I think it’s still an amazing day for us.”