Norris makes shocking claim about 2022 Mercedes amid Hamilton’s woes

Mercedes have faced a tough start to the 2022 Formula 1 season, but Lando Norris believes the W13 is very strong in one area.

Lando Norris has faced a challenging start to the 2022 season, in fact, all Mercedes-powered teams have found the going tough so far this year.

The British driver was forced into retirement at the recent Miami Grand Prix, after being hit by Pierre Gasly on the exit of Turn 7.

The collision saw Norris spin several times, before coming to a halt alongside the concrete barrier with only three wheels on his McLaren.

The disappointment Norris faced in Miami comes on the back of the team’s best performance of the season so far, at the Emilia Romagna Grand Prix.

READ: Lewis Hamilton shares inspirational message amid question marks over his future

The Brit finished a superb third in Imola, after showing strong pace throughout the weekend at the historic circuit.

McLaren’s yo-yo pace leaves Norris unsure of what to expect at the upcoming Spanish Grand Prix, the 22-year-old is hoping the team can at least make “some more improvements”.

“From [the] Barcelona pre-season tests, I want to say it’s a bit more hopeful,” the Briton commented.

“Hopefully, anyway, we can just make some more improvements with the car.”

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Apart from Red Bull and Ferrari, who are clearly the top two teams this season, the rest of the running order has changed at almost each circuit.

Mercedes appear to have the third best package, followed by Alfa Romeo, with Norris believing his McLaren F1 Team are currently the fifth or sixth best team on the grid.

READ: Max Verstappen hoping for ‘clean start’ in Barcelona

“I want to say we’re behind Mercedes, we’re behind Alfa Romeo, but we’re in a good fight with Alpine and AlphaTauri. I think that’s quite simple,” Norris added.

“Haas are there or thereabouts, with us as well, so it’s close. I think that puts us around fifth fastest or sixth or something.

“I think we have a decent pace. We just need a little bit more to take a fight to Mercedes and the guys ahead.”

One of the biggest shocks so far this season has been the rapid downfall of Mercedes, the reigning eight-time constructors’ championships have struggled getting to grips with the W13.

Norris though believes that despite their struggles, Mercedes still have “one of the best cars” through the slow-speed corners, which there was plenty of at Miami.

“I wouldn’t say surprised.

“This track has a lot of slow-speed corners, and Mercedes have been one of the best cars on the grid in slow-speed since day one.

“I guess they just figured out a bit more this weekend and maximised their car’s potential a bit more, so I’m not surprised.

“It’s been the same in Formula 1 for years; some weekends, your car suits one track and the other time it suits another car.”