Austrian GP: Lando Norris claims P3 despite five-second penalty

Austrian GP: Lando Norris claims P3 despite five-second penalty

Lando Norris goes on to snatch third place at the Austrian GP, despite receiving five-second penalty from battle with Perez.

Lando Norris’ stock continues to rise during the 2021 Formula 1 season. With the young McLaren driver picking up another podium finish over the weekend. Finishing third at the Austrian GP.

All did not go to plan, however. After Norris received a five-second time penalty after ‘pushing’ Red Bull’s Sergio Perez off the track at Turn 4 in the early stages of the race.

Turn 4 has become quite notorious over recent years for playing a hand in determining race outcomes. Often to the detriment of drivers attempting to overtake around the outside. As was the case with the Norris and Perez incident.

Along with Turn 3, it has become one of the favourite spots on track for drivers to overtake. But while there is the chance for reward, there is also the chance for things to go drastically wrong.

Norris was not happy with the penalty allocation, labelling Perez’s move as “stupid”.

“I thought that lap one was just racing, really. [Perez] tried to go round the outside which was a bit stupid, and he ran off the track himself,” Norris said during his post-race interview, “I didn’t push him. I’m frustrated, but I’m also happy with P3, we had a very good pace, and I’m happy.

“It was a lot of fun, a good race, it was exciting. But I’m disappointed because we should’ve been in second place.”

Norris’ P3 at the Austrian GP makes up his third for the season, after scoring podium finishes at Imola and Monaco. Adding to that, he is the only driver to have secured points in all nine races this season. As well as finishing in the top five on eight occasions.

All of this has led to him sitting a healthy fourth in the Drivers’ Championship, just three points behind Perez.

Norris continued to defend his move on Perez while talking with Sky Sports F1 after the podium celebrations concluded. Annoyed that the time penalty had taken a possible second place away from him.

“It’s his risk to go around the outside. He knows there’s gravel there,” said Norris. “You watch every other junior series; every time someone tries to go around the outside and doesn’t commit to it they end up in the gravel. I didn’t even squeeze him off.

“You understeer around the corner anyway, he should have expected he wasn’t going to make it. I don’t know, I’m just annoyed because it cost us P2.

“Hamilton had a problem but we had the pace to be ahead of Bottas at least, especially in the second stint. Would have liked to be second and not third again, just cementing myself a bit more, so just a bit annoyed about that.

“It’s lap one [after the restart], people are racing, and he’s tried something that hasn’t worked. His fault not mine.”

It’s only a matter of time until Norris finds himself standing on the second place podium, or better yet, first. After recently signing on with McLaren for the foreseeable future, the Woking-based team will be licking their chops at what lay ahead for the 21-year-old.

With F1 pundits praising his Austrian GP race and the development he has shown throughout the early stages of 2021. Even Lewis Hamilton was appreciative of Norris’ talent, saying “Such a great driver, Lando” over team radio after his duel with the up and coming Brit.

A two-week break will see the F1 circus head to Silverstone next. Where McLaren will be looking to take advantage of their straight-line speed.