Lando Norris says he ‘may as well not turn up’

McLaren racer Lando Norris was set for a front row start in Abu Dhabi, prior to running wide at Turn 12.

Lando Norris was left furious with himself after qualifying on Saturday at the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix, following another costly blunder.

Norris safely progressed into Q3 with ease and looked like a real contender for pole position, especially after his opening lap in the final part of qualifying.

The British driver sat in second behind Max Verstappen after the opening Q3 laps, something which looked very promising as his lap was set on an old set of Soft tyres.

He was fitted with a new set of the softest compound for his final hot lap of the 2023 season, with him having been very much in the fight for pole position.

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Halfway round his final push lap and Norris was right in contention for a front row start, as he was just over a tenth of a second slower than Verstappen through the opening two sectors.

However, he lost it all in the final corners after he run wide at Turn 12, with this error having unsettled his car through Turns 13 and 14.

It proved to be a huge mistake, as instead of starting on the front row, he’ll be getting underway from P5.

Norris was livid with himself and criticised his performance over the radio after his final Q3 lap, where he admitted that he “may as well not turn up on Saturdays”.

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“Yeah you don’t need to say anything… may as well not turn up on Saturdays,” Norris said on the team radio.

It’s not the first time this season that he’s been furious with his performance over one-lap, as he was also frustrated to miss out on pole in Qatar and Brazil.

READ: Lewis Hamilton makes major admission at Abu Dhabi GP

To add to his woes, Oscar Piastri will start Sunday’s race from third, behind Verstappen and Charles Leclerc.

The only positive for Norris is that with him starting from fifth and Piastri in third, McLaren look set to clinch fourth in the Constructors’ Championship, as Aston Martin’s Fernando Alonso and Lance Stroll qualified in seventh and 13th respectively.

Whilst he hasn’t qualified as well as he wanted to, Norris’ race pace does look very strong, meaning that he could yet be in contention to end the year with another podium finish.