Lando Norris makes Aston Martin and Ferrari prediction in Red Bull fight

Lando Norris pitted six times at the season-opening Bahrain GP, following a pneumatic problem.

Lando Norris has labelled Aston Martin as having the “potential” to beat Red Bull this season, with the McLaren driver having hailed the Silverstone-based side for being in the “best position” after the Bahrain Grand Prix.

Aston Martin were sensational in Bahrain, with the side having risen to almost second in the pecking order.

Fernando Alonso proved at the Bahrain International Circuit that the British side are a real threat this season, with the Spaniard having claimed a podium on his debut for the team.

The most concerning thing for the likes of Red Bull and Ferrari, is that the former midfield side just look set to get better and better as the season goes on, despite Red Bull being in “complete control”.

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“I think Aston are in the best position at the minute,” Norris told Top Gear.

“They have a young car in terms of philosophy and development, and they did a very good job in Bahrain.

“Red Bull do seem like the dominant team at the minute and of course they are clearly ahead of everyone, but I don’t know, for some reason it seems like everyone has made more presumptions for the rest of the year than ever before, just after round one.

“Yes, at the minute Red Bull are in complete control, but Aston look like the potentials and I think Ferrari are the same. Mercedes seem like they’re a little bit on the back foot, but that can all change in such a long season.”

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Whilst Aston Martin are flying high, the same can’t be said for McLaren, who endured a horrific start to the season.

Rookie Oscar Piastri retired early on, whilst Norris finished last after pitting six times, following a pneumatic problem.

Norris is hopeful, though, that the MCL60 has the pace to score points going forward, something which’ll be vital based on the Briton’s opinion that “it’s the closest midfield” in years.

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“I think we had a reasonable chance to score points in Bahrain. We were within the points before we started to have issues, so I think that’s a good target for us,” Norris said.

“There are four teams which are a lot quicker, so that’s eight positions that are probably a little bit out of reach in terms of pace, which just leaves ninth and 10th place.

“So, it’s not like I can confidently say we can fight for big points, because I don’t think that’s realistic in any way, but a lot of the midfield teams at the moment – including us – are fighting for ninth and 10th. If we can get on the table and be in that position then we have to be happy with that.

“It’s the closest midfield I think we’ve seen for years. It’s pretty much the top four teams and then everyone else. That means it’s more rewarding when you put things together and more costly when you make mistakes.”