It began in Australia 2019, with a 12th placed Brit Lando Norris struggling to bring home his McLaren powered by the Renault E-Tech 19 1.6 V6 engine, Carlos Sainz Jr had previously retired and hope looked slim for the working based giants of F1 who’s day’s of glory had long gone.
Fast forward three years and the sleeping giant has been woken, who would have thought on that sunny day in Australia that in three short years they would be back challenging for podiums with the elite of Formula One.
Where Is McLaren Now?
After this weekends Silverstone Grand Prix Lando Norris’ P4 scored him his 113th point of the season, McLaren finished the race on 163pts for the season to date with Daniel Ricciardo scoring his 50th point of the season, this is the first time since 2014 that McLaren has scored this many points. 181 points was the last time McLaren who’s drivers was Button and Magnusson scored more points in the season, bare in mind there’s 13 races left this season McLaren will be fancying themselves to best that tally and close in on their recent best in the early 2010s when their drivers was the world champion pairing of Button and Hamilton during said period they consistently hit over 300 points a season.
Were not even at half way mark of season and McLaren have already scored more points than 4 of the last 5 seasons.
Were already seeing the team of Norris and Ricciardo bring McLaren back into contention, prior to this season 2011 and 2012 was the last time McLaren had back to back finishes in the top 3 of the constructors championship.
Its not since the season of 2012 and the team of British drivers Jenson Button and Lewis Hamilton that McLaren got more than 3 podium finishes in a season.
What Does Lando Norris Bring to Mclaren?
Were only in Lando Norris’ 3rd season in F1 after a difficult rookie season, Norris got his first podium in the Covid-19 struck 2020 season coming 3rd in the opening race at Austria something he failed to replicate until this seasons second race held at Imola, Italy.
Where Norris got his first podium of the season, he followed this at Austria and Monaco taking P3 on both occasions, and narrowly missing out on P3 this weekend in Silverstone due to trouble with his pit stop.
Norris is the perfect fit for McLaren they have always had strong meaningful British connections in the past with names such as James Hunt, David Coulthard, Jenson Button and Lewis Hamilton to name a few, the pride a British driver feels racing under the McLaren name is something very special that only a select few have been capable of carrying the burden of.
Norris is very marketable and fits the mold, in his early 20’s and a handsome young man, whose confident but not arrogant, polite and interacts with his fans but knows when it’s time to do business. Something that perhaps McLaren have missed in recent years someone who can put a face to the team.
Unfortunately any new fans to McLaren won’t have witnessed a win as you must go back nearly 10 years to the 2012 season to find McLaren’s last win, which was the last race of 2012 in Brazil by former British World champion Jenson Button.
This is something in the near future for Norris and McLaren, every point finish and podium finish specifically we see the confidence in Norris grow, and with the recent incident at Silverstone between Championship contenders Max Verstappen and Lewis Hamilton, McLaren and Norris are just one racing incident from that P1 that has eluded them for so long.
If we can see Ricciardo pick up some more high finishes and maybe a podium or two himself, then the professional rivalry will do wonders for both drivers and the team pushing each other once again to the top of Formula One.
Featured Image Credits to Embed from Getty Images