Lando Norris fires warning about Max Verstappen friendship

Max Verstappen revealed that Lando Norris is the driver he's closest with on the grid.

Lando Norris has recognised that his friendship with reigning World Champion Max Verstappen will “get put to the test” when the pair are fighting for wins, something which is really yet to happen.

Norris did briefly lead the British Grand Prix after getting a better start than the Red Bull driver; however, Verstappen breezed past a few laps later with ease.

The Dutchman received no fight from Norris, who seemingly recognised that his battle was elsewhere.

Verstappen and Norris have often been spotted together away from the circuit, with the pair having been seen on holiday with Nyck de Vries ahead of this weekend’s Hungarian Grand Prix.

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Verstappen admitted ahead of the British GP that Norris is the driver he’s closest to on the grid, something the Briton agrees with.

Norris recognises though that when the pair are driving, they “forget about everything”.

“I’ll agree with that. I think me and Max are very good friends,” Norris said.

“I guess we’ve kind of grown up, not exactly together, we’ve never really raced against each other until Formula 1, but we’ve grown up in a similar generation, similar times and I think we’ve always got along.

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“I think certain mentalities are similar in terms of we’re here because we love it, we want to enjoy every minute that we’re here in the paddock and driving cars that we love to drive.

“But as soon as you put the helmet on, you forget about everything else, and I think we have the correct amount of respect away from the track, where you can get along and be mates, whatever it is.

“It’s not like we see each other every day or text each other every day but we get along and sometimes bump into each other, go for dinners, or go for a crêpe, whatever it is.”

Despite this, Norris is certain that the pair have much “respect” for one another, even if the two-time World Champion is trying to “make everyone look silly”.

“I’m sure there’s nothing more than what he wants to do is just beat everyone and make everyone look silly, and it’s the same the opposite way around,” said Norris.

“You don’t do anything differently, most likely, when you get in the car because we get along off track. We have the mentality of, you’re driving, you forget about everything, and off the track, you’ve a good amount of respect for each other. You can keep those two quite separate.

“But I’m sure if Max seems to be aggressive, or do things that don’t look friendly, then he’ll do them.”

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As was seen with Lewis Hamilton and Nico Rosberg at Mercedes, friendships get put to the test and often breakdown during battle, something Verstappen and Norris are yet to experience.

Should McLaren offer Norris a race-winning car, then the 23-year-old’s relationship with Verstappen will be tested, something the British driver is aware of.

“I’m sure when my time comes, and we’re racing for wins or championships, then I’m sure it (their friendship) will get put to the test a little bit more,” admitted Norris.