Lando Norris has made a mark on Formula 1 since his 2019 debut for McLaren, not least in his storming start to the 2021 season which saw him occupy P3 in the Drivers’ standings for a considerable portion of the year.
Norris has however opened up in the past about his mental health struggles due to the stressful nature of the Formula 1 environment. The six-time podium finisher however now admits that the stability of his long term deal with McLaren has relieved some of these stresses.
Speaking with Motorsport.com, Norris discussed the better balance he has been able to strike between his life within Formula 1 and his life outside of the sport, admitting that “feeling a bit more established” in the sport is a key factor.
“Now I feel a bit more comfortable,” Norris said. “I feel like I'm performing very well, I'm delivering when I need to deliver. I'm comfortable on track.
“But I'm also able to live a good life, and can relax when I'm away from Formula 1, and not just think 'what do I have to do for next time, because I've done a shit job here' or whatever, which is just a little bit more what I was like a few years ago.
“You'd just think, 'why did I do badly there? Why am I not good enough in that position?' and just constantly think about it. You don't feel like you can relax.
“Whereas now I feel like I've got Formula 1, I'm doing everything I can and efficiently to do the best job I can in that. But then I can also live a life away from it.”
The young Briton went on to discuss his forward looking outlook on his time with McLaren, speaking of his excitement for the future as the team works towards upgrading their facilities.
“It's not that everything isn't [good] now,” he said of McLaren’s current facilities “But a new wind tunnel and certain other projects we have with the team which are coming along, and which will hopefully give us better performance by '24 and '25, I also look forward to those times,
“We might not just go out and win, but I want to convince myself that it'll definitely help us move in that direction.
“There are so many good things that we're doing as a team that I see us doing better than some of the top teams at times. It's just sometimes you don't have the car that can show that, if that makes sense.”
Norris went on to state in no uncertain terms that he is happy with his decision to stay at McLaren for the foreseeable future and also discussed his growing excitement and optimism for what is yet to come with the team.
“I'm happy. I also feel like I made a good decision being here for so long. I'm enjoying it, which is for me the most important thing.
“Every year, I'm still excited to see what the future holds because I'm almost more and more optimistic of where we can end up in a few years.”