Lando Norris has clarified latest feedback he made about talking with Crimson Bull previous to re-signing with McLaren, saying they weren’t “speaking closely”.
Arriving on the grid with McLaren in 2019, Norris’ first goal was to safe his future, the motive force re-signing with the workforce via to 2022.
Rising as one of many stars on the grid and billed as a possible World Champion, he shocked many within the paddock when, initially of this yr, he put pen to paper on a brand new long-term cope with the Woking workforce.
Pundits questioned his choice, particularly as seats at prime groups akin to Mercedes and Crimson Bull can be opening within the not too distant future.
Norris was lately requested about that by Auto Motor und Sport and instructed the German publication there had “been talks with Crimson Bull”.
However these talks, he’s now clarified, have been by no means critical and as an alternative have been extra only a “chat”.
“It’s extra simply I used to be coming to the tip of my contract, and it wasn’t like we (Crimson Bull and I) have been speaking closely,” Norris stated in keeping with Sky Sports activities.
“I actually stated, it was simply, everybody all the time tries to talk to all groups in some unspecified time in the future, so I spoke to them, I spoke to some different folks.
“A chat’s a chat, it’s not like, ‘what we are able to do right away?’ Simply maintaining in contact, issues like that, it’s so simple as that generally.
“It was simply coming to the tip of the contract, you see what choices can be found, you simply type of discover out what’s potential, what is likely to be potential over the following few years.
“It wasn’t simply Crimson Bull. Each driver has chats with a number of the completely different groups on what may occur, and it’s so simple as that principally.”
Lando Norris has ‘all the time been completely happy’ with McLaren
Norris insists his talks with rival groups was by no means a case of him not being proud of McLaren.
Though the Briton wish to be able to combat for race wins and the World title, he insists he’s “completely happy” at McLaren.
He’s additionally large on the soundness and safety that his long-term McLaren deal offers him, Norris set to stay round till the tip of 2025.
“I’ve all the time been proud of McLaren, as a lot as I could possibly be happier, I’ve all the time been completely happy,” he stated.
“Earlier than I’ve ever spoken to anybody else, my talks have all the time been with McLaren first, that’s all the time the way it goes.
“As a lot as generally you may like what may occur, the most effective factor for me is signing the contract that I’ve now, simply having that confidence that you simply’re going to be in F1, and the information that you simply’re going to be in F1 for 3, 4, 5 years.
“For me that’s like the most effective feeling, simply because it makes you extra relaxed, extra snug within the surroundings that you simply’re in.”
The Christian Horner impact
With six podiums to his identify in a automobile that may be a midfield runner, Norris has proven himself to be somebody for rival groups to observe.
Horner’s been doing simply that.
His early 2022 talks weren’t the primary time that he’s sat down with Norris to discuss the long run, however each time he does, the 22-year-old commits to McLaren the “subsequent day”.
“We’ve spoken with Lando a few instances over time,” the Crimson Bull workforce boss stated as per GPFans.
“However each time we’ve had a dialog, the following day he’s signed a contract with McLaren.”
Horner doesn’t foresee talking with Norris once more any time quickly with the Briton locked in for an extra three years.
“He’s on a long-term contract with McLaren,” he continued, “and it appears like he’s going to be there for just a few extra years.”
Learn extra: Why Lando Norris could possibly be tempted to search for the McLaren exit door