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Lando Norris takes swipe at McLaren rivals after barnstorming drive to fifth in Mexico City GP

Lando Norris scythed through the field to eventually finish fifth at the 2023 Mexico City GP

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Lando Norris has suggested drivers should be self-aware when in wheel-to-wheel combat after finishing fifth in Sunday’s 2023 Mexico City Grand Prix.

Norris, who started 17th, made early headway from Lap 1 after Sergio Perez and Charles Leclerc made contact into Turn 1, with the Brit moving up to 10th at just under half distance.

However, Norris’ charge was interrupted by a red flag caused by Kevin Magnussen’s crash on Lap 35 and his poor second start, which dropped him to 15th. But he produced a stunning comeback drive to finish fifth, earning his 10th consecutive points finish and was voted driver of the day by F1 fans. 

“I enjoyed the whole thing apart from my restart if you saw it”, reflected Norris to the media after the race. “I had to avoid a very big crash, just people coming across, not realising they can be three abreast.

“So I avoided two extremely big crashes, one would have been very nasty, so a bit of self-awareness from other drivers would have been great, 

“But that’s not why I lost out. I lost out because of a bad start. The pace was amazing from Lap 1, there was a lot of [tyre] management involved. I couldn’t push as much as I wanted to at times. 

“The pace to go from 14th-15th to fifth, to have better pace than almost everyone bar Hamilton and Max, was very encouraging for us, so as perfect of a day as I could have asked for.”

Norris looks ahead to 2023 Brazilian GP

With Norris finishing fifth and teammate Oscar Piastri eighth, McLaren now has a 20-point cushion over Aston Martin in fourth place in the constructors’ championship after neither Fernando Alonso nor Lance Stroll scored in Mexico City.

With next Sunday’s Brazilian GP weekend at Interlagos being the final Sprint weekend of 2023, Norris and McLaren will be looking to challenge for points and even a maiden Formula 1 victory.

Lando Norris leads Fernando Alonso of Aston Martin and Logan Sargeant of Williams during 2023 Mexico City GP | McLaren

In the past, Interlagos has produced some shock results, and with rain forecast for Friday qualifying Norris may get another chance at securing his maiden Formula 1 win in 2023.

“When we set our pre-race expectations, we didn’t expect to be great this weekend. When I say not great, it’s not like we expected to be last,” explained Norris.

“We just didn’t expect to be as competitive as we were in Qatar and Japan. But we still expect to race against Ferraris and Mercedes it’s just we’re not looking like pole favourites, that’s all. 

“I think it’s going to be another tricky weekend. It’s [a] sprint, which makes things more exciting for everyone but another tough one to anticipate.”

Ed Spencer
Ed Spencer
FIA accredited journalist
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