Lando Norris fires brutal jibe at Daniel Ricciardo

McLaren dropped Daniel Ricciardo in favour of rookie Oscar Piastri, leaving the older Australian without a race seat.

McLaren’s Lando Norris has come out in defence of his new teammate Oscar Piastri after the pair have endured a tough start to the season.

With the Papaya outfit struggling to find sufficient performance in their car to fight for a title, McLaren is currently sat at fifth in the Constructors’ Standings after only scoring points in one race this season.

“[Piastri is] doing really well, honestly,” Lando Norris said.

“He handles pressure very well, I think that’s one of his strengths.

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“He’s calm, controlled and quick, so he’s got a lot of what you need. 

“He pushes me more compared to the competition I’ve had in recent years, which is also a good thing for us as a team,” Norris added, seemingly taking a dig at his former teammate Daniel Ricciardo.

Ricciardo partnered Norris for the 2021 and 2022 seasons, finishing behind the British-Belgian in the Drivers’ Standings both years.

Having been left without a race seat for the first time since he debuted in Formula 1, Ricciardo has returned to Red Bull as a test driver and ambassador.

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Red Bull team principal Christian Horner has been publicly supportive of Ricciardo as he resets and targets a return to the grid.

“It was clear when he came back that he had picked up some habits,” Horner said. 

“We didn’t recognise him as the Daniel that that had left us two or three years earlier.”

Ricciardo has been open about using the break to reflect on his career and spend time recharging with family.

“It’s only been a few months but I already know what I want to do differently when I’m back on the grid next year,” Ricciardo told Speed Week.

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“That’s cool, because I wouldn’t know if I was sitting in the car again this year.

“I know where I want to be and that I thrive when the stakes are higher in a top team.

“I know it will probably be difficult to achieve that, but that’s my goal.”