McLaren stunned by Lando Norris penalty

Lando Norris received a five-second time penalty for driving unnecessarily slowly behind the Safety Car.

Lando Norris’ Canadian Grand Prix ended with the Briton having a points finish stripped from him, as a result of showing “unsportsmanlike conduct” during the race’s only Safety Car period.

The McLaren driver put on a show at the Circuit de Gilles-Villeneuve, with Norris having been responsible for the majority of the action on Sunday.

He pulled off some excellent overtakes on his team-mate Oscar Piastri and Alfa Romeo’s Valtteri Bottas, before almost making a spectacular move on Esteban Ocon at the final corner.

The move on Ocon was seemingly just a touch unrealistic for the 23-year-old, who was forced to skip the final chicane.

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Whether he’d made the move stick or not was sadly irrelevant, given that the McLaren driver was awarded a five-second time penalty mid-race.

Norris was slapped with the penalty by the FIA for “unsportsmanlike conduct”, after it was discovered that he drove unnecessarily slowly behind the Safety Car, which was summoned after George Russell hit a wall.

He was doing so to build a big enough gap between him and Piastri, to allow McLaren to double-stack the duo.

It ultimately proved to be a costly move by Norris, who was demoted from ninth to P13 once the penalty was added to his finishing time.

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When the penalty was initially announced, it left everybody confused, including McLaren.

The FIA failed to acknowledge for a while what Norris had actually been penalised for, with “unsportsmanlike conduct” having certainly been peculiar wording.

Sky Sports F1 reporter Ted Kravitz was one of many who were completely baffled by the stewards’ wording, with the veteran reporter having admitted that it was like giving a “penalty to a puppy for doing a whoopsie in the park.”

Kravitz went on to reveal that even the Woking-based team initially had no idea why he’d been penalised, but that they simply told Norris to build a five-second gap to Lance Stroll behind.

“McLaren are trying to understand that as well,” Kravitz added.

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“They are telling him to get a five-second gap on Stroll. But he can’t do that.”

Norris failed to build the five-second gap to Stroll, as well as several other drivers.

He was ultimately demoted behind Stroll, Bottas, Piastri and Pierre Gasly.