Lando Norris admitted that he “just wanted that little bit more” in today’s British Grand Prix despite finishing his home race in a career-best fourth place for McLaren.
Norris started the race from fifth on the grid, and gained a position on the first lap when Max Verstappen was spun out into the gravel following contact with Lewis Hamilton.
It meant that Norris was in fourth place for the standing restart, and that gave him the opportunity to get the jump on Mercedes’ Valtteri Bottas and put himself into a potential podium place, to the delight of British fans in the grandstands.
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Unfortunately a problem with his pit stop on lap 22 cost him time. It allowed Bottas to get the position back when he pitted a lap later than the McLaren, leaving Norris running in fourth again for the second half of the afternoon.
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“I don’t know what to say,” Norris told the media afterwards. “It was still a very good race at the end of the day.
“I held onto third for the whole of the first stint so we had pace to hold [Bottas] off,” he pointed out. “Not necessarily to catch them up and do anything else.
“But because of the pit stop I didn’t get the chance to be ahead and defend for as long as possible,” he continued. “I’m still P4 in my home race, and that’s a good result from sixth yesterday.
“Just here, I just wanted that little bit more,” he admitted. “It would have been nice to fight for it and have that opportunity.
“But fourth and fifth for us as a team is still a good result,” he accepted. “Fourth is still a very good result for us, so it’s not like I’m really annoyed,” he added.
“I am just annoyed that I didn’t get the opportunity to fight and put on a good show and at least have some battling and some racing.”
Fourth place is the 21-year-old’s best result in his home race. He finished 11th in his maiden race at Silverstone in 2019, and was fifth last year before going on to finish in ninth in the 70th Anniversary Grand Prix the following week.
Today’s outcome means that Norris retains his hold on third place in the drivers championship, albeit now by just five points now over Bottas. Meanwhile McLaren’s advantage over Ferrari in the constructors standings is 15 points.
“It’s still been a fun weekend,” Norris said of the first trial of F1’s new sprint qualifying format.
“it’s been a pleasure to have all the fans back, and it’s been a lot more enjoyable because of that, and means a lot more as a driver.
“Incredible,” he said. “I can’t wait to come back next year and give it another shot!”
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