The 2021 season looks to be a breakthrough year for F1 diver Lando Norris. It’s evident that the British driver’s two years of hard work with the McLaren team is starting to pay off. The 21-year-old driver joined the McLaren team in 2019. While Norris has had one team-mate, Carlos Sainz leave and Daniel Ricciardo join the McLaren team this season, he has remained the constant foundation that the team has been able to build on. So far this season, Norris has secured a total of four podiums and one pole position at the Russian GP where he narrowly missed out on his first race win when he slid off the track on the penultimate lap.
Norris who has been open to discussing mental health issues most recently on the This Morning television show, also reflected on the driver he was two years ago and how far he has come with the McLaren team.
Norris stated: “How would I have coped with the last few races if I was me two years ago I think is a very difficult one to answer.”
“I think there would have been two very good things, more because at that point you would have taken the positives a lot more than maybe the negatives.”
“Therefore you start to see the glass the opposite way and you start to see more the negatives as well. But I think I just would say I don’t let it affect me as much now as what I did back then. Both good things and bad things. That’s a good thing in a way, and it’s kept me a lot more balanced and mentally in a much better place.”
Over the past couple of years that Norris has been with McLaren he describes the team as his family and emphasizes how crucial their support has been to his development not just as a driver but as a person as well.
“They’re like my family in a way because I joined them at a good age where they’ve been able to help me become the person I am now. It’s not like I’ve just joined them and I’m there. “They’ve helped me become a much better person.”
“For me, it’s been crucial even to have the performance I have on track nowadays,” he added. “Sometimes an answer can be a lot more simple than you think.”
One other key factor for the positive change in Norris's performance this season has been surrounding himself with people who have his best interest in mind. Norris also speaks about keeping people who value him and really want to help him close and ridding himself of those people who only care about him on a superficial level.
“Having good mates that I grew up with for many years, just spending more time with them, getting kind of rid of the people you maybe don’t enjoy spending so much time with. It can be those such simple things which can make a big difference in life and can make you see in a very different way and make you enjoy it a lot more.
“So that’s kind of almost the biggest thing which has helped me, is just being around the people which are always there to help me rather than people, which are just there because they want to be friends of just the position that you’re in.
“But I’m much better now and feeling confident and excited for this weekend.”