Lando Norris asks for team orders

Lando Norris has claimed four P2 finishes in 2023, at Silverstone, the Hungaroring, the Marina Bay Circuit and now Suzuka.

Lando Norris called for team orders during the Japanese Grand Prix on Sunday, after finding himself stuck behind team-mate Oscar Piastri.

Starting from third, Norris made an excellent launch off the line and almost led into the opening corner, only for reigning World Champion Max Verstappen to hold the inside line.

Norris slotted into second ahead of Piastri, who started on the front row alongside Verstappen.

The British driver remained in second for the entirety of the opening stint of the race but fell back behind Piastri following a successful undercut by the Australian.

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Despite having undercut Norris, it was clear that Piastri didn’t have the pace to keep his team-mate behind.

Norris quickly caught Piastri and became frustrated behind his team-mate, to the point that he called for team orders.

The 23-year-old was concerned that George Russell – who was attempting a one-stop strategy – would jump both him and Piastri, if they didn’t speed up soon.

“It’s just ruining the race now if he wants George to beat us,” Norris complained over the team radio.

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McLaren ultimately listened to their more experienced driver and called for Piastri to let the Briton past, something he did.

Norris went onto finish in second for the fourth time this season, with the McLaren driver having finished 17 seconds ahead of Piastri who claimed his maiden F1 podium.

The result moved Norris into joint-seventh in the Drivers’ Championship, after joining Russell on 115 points.

Norris was pleased with the Woking-based team’s “amazing day”, whilst he was quick to congratulate Piastri on his first F1 podium.

“Another amazing day for us, a P2 and a P3,” Norris said in his post-race interview.

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“My start was very good. I almost had Max. Max is Max as well so I didn’t have much chance into Turn Two. But I tried and the pace was extremely strong comparing to everyone.

“We’re not close to Max but we are not miles away either so I’m very happy.

“Also for Oscar as well, it’s his first podium in Formula 1 so congrats to him. We’re getting there. We are pushing and the progress we have made is pretty outstanding.

“I’m very proud of the team and the steps forward we are making every weekend. A first double podium together with Oscar.”