Can McLaren win 2024 Spanish GP? Lando Norris reveals the secret

Norris proved to be an expert bull fighter by beating Max Verstappen by 0.020 on Saturday

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Can Lando Norris and McLaren win the 2024 Spanish GP? That’s the question on everyone’s lips after they stunned Max Verstappen by taking pole position at the Circuit de Catalunya-Barcelona

The 2024 Miami GP winner edged out the defending world champion by 0.020 to take the front spot on the grid by an incomprehensibly small margin, giving him the clean side of the grid in the long run down to Turn 1 for Sunday’s Formula 1 race at the Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya.

But Red Bull are often impervious in Grand Prixs and Verstappen has a knack for winning from just about anywhere, so does Norris think they overachieved, or does he genuinely believe that he and his papaya-coloured crew can claim their second victory by winning the 2024 Spanish GP?

“I don’t have any concerns, I’m just excited,” Norris told members of the media, including Total-Motorsport.com. “It’s a long run down to Turn 1, it’s probably one of the places you don’t want to start on pole but it’s an opportunity for us to go out and try and win a race.

“We’ve not done loads of long running, we’ve done a bit, and I think we were close as it always has been. So, I think tomorrow, it’s not like this car’s way quicker [than qualifying].”

Do you think Norris and McLaren can win the 2024 Spanish GP? Find out as Total-Motorsport.com brings you live coverage from 13:00 BST.

Lando Norris during the 2024 Spanish GP weekend | McLaren
Lando Norris during the 2024 Spanish GP weekend | McLaren

Norris’s secret to winning the 2024 Spanish GP

Track position has always been key in Barcelona thanks to the value of fresh air to mange tyre temperatures and degradation whilst the dirty air can act as a significant buffer to any cars behind, even if they appear to be considerably fast.

Think back to 2022 when George Russell’s W13 Mercedes proved to be more than a nuisance to Verstappen’s Red Bull when the Dutchman lacked DRS, as Russell found himself able to repel multiple attacks before the world champion went on to finish 32 seconds ahead, that’s how crucial track position is.

So, it’s far from a surprise that Norris bids for track position off the line to seal his run into the first turn to begin to think about how he can hold off any challengers for 66 laps around the 2.9 mile long circuit as Norris and McLaren look to win the Spanish GP.

“I hope I can have a just a good start and kind of control it from there,” Norris added to media. “But I’m sure that all race I’m going to be under pressure and going to have to make those kinds of calls but I’m I look forward to it.

“I look forward to racing against anyone and Max is the guy on the track that I’ve raced the least just because he’s always been too far ahead. I’m happy to now kind of be there and I’m sure whether I’m first or second tomorrow coming out of Turn 1, it’s going to be a fight till pretty much to the end of the race.

“So, I’m excited I look forward to it, I’ve not had many opportunities to do so. When I have [qualified next to Verstappen], he’s normally been about a second a lap quicker, but that’s not the case anymore, so I’m excited to just to race against them and have some fun.”

Brandon Sutton
Brandon is an alumni of an NCTJ and BJTC Liverpool John Moores University course, and has been with Total-Motorsport.com for over a year now. He enjoys covering all forms of motorsport but particularly focuses on Formula 1, and Brandon loves to debate various topics of the sport and other interests, especially if that topic doesn't have an open/shut answer such as the GOAT debate.
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