Norris rules out Shanghai podium


"No chance," says McLaren driver when asked if a podium is possible in China.

Having claimed pole for the Sprint the youngster threw it all away in the first corner, having run wide as he battled Lewis Hamilton, while in qualifying for the Grand Prix he momentarily held a front row slot before being eclipsed by Fernando Alonso and then Sergio Perez.

When subsequently asked if a podium is still possible, Norris's reply was emphatic. "No chance!" he responded. "The Red Bulls will probably lap everyone multiple times!

"Ferrari, I think, will not be as quick as them but they'll be close enough," he added. "I think they're out of our league. As soon as they had clean air this morning it was quite easy for him to pull away. So not expecting anything surprising.

"We said before the weekend we'd struggle, and I think we've done a better job than we thought in low fuel, but definitely in high fuel everything that we expect happens, and I think that's why we struggle so much.

"I still look forward to it," he added, "I think we can still have a good race, we can still fight for some good points, and if we get lucky with some other things it can still be a good day."

Indeed, the McLaren driver believes his main rival come Sunday will be George Russell.

"I think we're in a good position," he said. "I think our battle will be with the Aston and probably with the Mercedes at some point, so we'll see. But today I think was a good day.

"Even with what happened this morning I think our pace was not bad. I think comparing to Mercedes, comparing to Aston, we're in a similar boat.

"It's just Red Bull are a mile ahead and then Ferrari are another big chunk ahead of us. With everyone else I think we're there or thereabouts, and it should be a good race."

Check out our Saturday gallery from Shanghai here.

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Published: 20/04/2024
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