McLaren boss Zak Brown has praised his driver Lando Norris, saying he doesn’t make the mistakes teams usually expect from rookies.
Lando Norris stepped up from Formula 2 this year, taking over the vacant seat left by the departing Stoffel Vandoorne. The highly rated rookie, finishing P2 to winner George Russell, immediately impressed at McLaren by finishing P6 in only his second race, and his season has continued to be a strong one as he constantly gets stuck into the midfield battle.
Four points finishes in total so far this year, and eye catching drives in France, Austria and Silverstone have impressed his boss. Zak Brown spoke at Silverstone about how pleased they are with their driver line-up. which has already been confirmed as staying the same for 2020: “I’ve been impressed with both our drivers. Really pleased with our driver line-up, which is why we wanted to confirm it ahead of the silly season, which seems to be ramping up.”
“Carlos has been extremely quick every weekend and then Lando specifically, he also is extremely quick, a quick learner. He’s not making some of the mistakes – knock on wood – that you maybe anticipate from a rookie driver. He drives quite mature, his feedback’s good, he gets along with Carlos very well, and both our drivers are driving for the team, so we’re just very pleased with their progress, so we thought we’d get that out of the way so we can continue with our programme, head-down and just keep racing.”
McLaren are the first team to nail down their driver pairing for next year, considerably earlier than most of the teams usually do. Even this side of the summer break is unusual, and Brown says they did so in order to cut off any speculation. He explained that they’ve seen enough various situations on and off track to know Norris can handle the pressure: “We like what we see. Both drivers are doing an excelling job. Specifically in Lando’s case, he now has enough races under his belt that we’ve seen him under pressure, we’ve seen him having to race his team-mate, we’ve seen him at the front of the field.”
“We’ve seen enough rounded elements to his driving to know that he’s one of the future stars of the sport. Again with the silly season ramping up, we want to not be part of that, keep our head down and just be focused on what we’re doing.”