McLaren had a miserable weekend in Canada and took no points home. First, Lando Norris had an issue with his power unit on Saturday, which meant he could not participate in Q2, and so, he started in 14th place. His teammate, Daniel Ricciardo started 8th on the grid. Then the team had another disaster during the race.
On lap 20, after Mick Schumacher’s retirement prompted a virtual safety car, McLaren chose to double-stack both of their cars. At that point, Ricciardo and Norris were running 8th and 11th respectively. This did not work particularly well for them. Daniel Ricciardo had a slow stop, which meant Lando Norris had to wait longer than he really was supposed to. As if that wasn’t enough, his replacement tires were not placed in the correct order, which meant an even longer delay.
This relegated Norris to 18th place, and soon, he was stuck in a train of cars. This was just salt on his wounds. Even if McLaren may have a faster car on paper, Norris was unable to make too many places up, and eventually only finished in 15th place. His teammate, Daniel Ricciardo, did not fare much better, finishing 11th.
Lando Norris: “The car’s not good enough”
Quite understandably, Lando Norris was very frustrated with how his Montreal weekend had gone. He felt that there were not many positives to take from the race, and that pretty much everything went wrong. As quoted by Motorsport, Norris said:
“The car’s not good enough. At times it’s strong. I was a little bit more optimistic after Friday and we could achieve more today.”
Norris was frustrated from being stuck in traffic and being unable to make overtakes quickly.
“But when I was stuck behind the Williams, they’re so fast, probably the quickest in the straights and we’re probably the slowest in the straights, and then it’s literally impossible to overtake so we can’t do anything.”
The McLaren MCL36 has not always seemed to be a bad car, and the team’s weekends in Imola (Lando Norris on the podium) and Australia (A 5-6 finish) were encouraging. But Norris feels that those were also due to luck, not always due to their actual pace and that this weekend in Canada gave them a bit of a reality check.
“Maybe at times, things look great. But it’s never really like genuine pace, you know. We’re a little bit there on luck sometimes. A day like today when it’s just more simple and you don’t have luck on your side, it shows where we’re actually at.”
Norris does not think that car is anywhere near expectations, saying that a weekend like this should serve as a reality check for the team. Going into McLaren and his own home race in Silverstone, he would be hoping that the car has more pace and a better weekend than the disaster in Canada.