Lando Norris reveals how he changed to beat Daniel Ricciardo

Lando Norris dominated former team-mate Daniel Ricciardo during their two-year spell together at McLaren.

Lando Norris has been a star of Formula 1 from the moment he stepped foot in the championship back in 2019, with the British driver having quickly asserted himself as the best midfield driver.

Norris often finds himself on his own in seventh, given that McLaren haven’t got the pace to challenge the frontrunners, yet are fast enough to comfortably beat their midfield opponents.

At least Norris is, the same can’t be said for his former team-mate Daniel Ricciardo, who was expected to lead the Woking-based team following his move in 2021.

As is well known, it was Norris who led the team the last two seasons, not the eight-time Grand Prix winner, whose contract was terminated as a result of poor performances.

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Norris was more often than not comfortably quicker than the Aussie, which made judging his performance somewhat difficult.

The 23-year-old was unable to use his team-mate as a target due to having been faster than him on a Grand Prix basis, meaning the Brit struggled to find a target to base his performance from.

The McLaren driver admits that judging his level is “tough”, but that ultimately, he has the “confidence” to always “deliver a good lap”, something he didn’t have when he started in the sport.

“That’s the tough part of it,” Norris told The Race.

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“At times, you want to believe you’re doing the best but even when you think you’ve done it amazingly, there will be times, there will be certain places where Daniel’s still extremely strong and I have to step up and do a better job when I learn from what he’s done.

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“But setting your own benchmark is something I’ve had to adapt to. A lot of this is done in practice, exploring as much as possible and building up then when you get to qualifying being able to deliver on everything that you’ve learned.

“When I came into F1, I wanted to go out and do the perfect lap straight away. Now I have the faith that I can try a lot of different things and then I can go into qualifying and piece it all together.

“That’s something I wouldn’t have been able to do in year one or year two, because I wouldn’t have been able to try so many things by not having [always] tried to do a perfect lap.

“Now I have the confidence I can go out and deliver a good lap and focus on learning as many things as possible. You never know because someone maybe could have done it better, but you have to explore on your own to know if you found the limit or not.”