McLaren issue statement on Lando Norris joining Red Bull

Lando Norris has raced with McLaren ever since he joined Formula 1, and several teams have expressed interest in signing him.

Zak Brown, CEO of McLaren, has expressed unwavering confidence that their driver Lando Norris is more inclined to stay with the team and pursue a championship victory than to make a switch to the reigning constructor champions, Red Bull. 

Amidst rumours linking Norris to Red Bull, Brown firmly believes that Norris remains committed to McLaren’s pursuit of championship glory.

The 23-year-old British driver’s remarkable performance on the track has sparked speculation about a potential move to the Milton Keynes-based Red Bull team. 

As Sergio Perez grapples to match the prowess of two-time world champion Max Verstappen, Norris’ consistent excellence has drawn attention. 

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While Norris’ current contract with McLaren extends until the conclusion of the 2025 season, Perez’s contract is set to expire in 2024, fuelling speculations of an earlier departure.

In a conversation with ESPN regarding Norris’ future with McLaren, Brown elucidated, “He loves McLaren, it’s been his family, so there’s no doubt in my mind that his number one choice is to win a world championship with McLaren. 

“I think the best thing we do to retain him is to demonstrate to him we’re a team capable of doing that. 

“It’s about giving him a car where he thinks ‘I think I can win a world championship with this team’.”

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Brown’s unequivocal belief in Norris’ intentions finds a solid foundation in the driver’s history with McLaren. 

Norris embarked on his Formula 1 journey with McLaren in 2019 and has flourished since taking the reins following Carlos Sainz’s departure. 

His strong connection with teammates and the McLaren crew in Woking has been evident throughout.

Beyond his own achievements, Norris has played a pivotal role in mentoring the team’s emerging star, Oscar Piastri. 

Norris’ influence has contributed to Piastri’s consistent progress, with the young rookie consistently vying for podium positions in recent races.

The sentiments shared by Norris in the past affirm his dedication to the McLaren cause. 

In an earlier interview with Sky Sports F1 this season, Norris emphasised, “I want to win races with McLaren. I want to win in papaya, I want to win championships. 

“I want to achieve my success and I want to achieve my goals with McLaren. 

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“That’s been my target since I’ve come here, since I’ve entered Formula 1 with this team.”

Norris has enjoyed two P2 finished this season, currently sitting in P8 of the Drivers’ Standings. 

While McLaren has taken the fight to Red Bull to some extent, Max Verstappen’s dominance has prevented them from getting on to the top step of the podium.