Lando Norris reveals true cause of nightmare Austria sprint race start

Oliver Harden
A dejected Lando Norris exits his McLaren MCL60 in parc ferme after the Austrian Grand Prix sprint race. Styria, July 2023.

McLaren driver Lando Norris has revealed an anti-stall issue was behind his disastrous start to the Austrian Grand Prix sprint race.

After shining in Saturday morning’s sprint shootout session to qualify third on the grid behind the dominant Red Bulls of Max Verstappen and Sergio Perez, Norris ended the opening lap in 10th after a disastrous start.

While it was initially assumed that Norris was caught up in the near-miss between Verstappen and Perez at Turn 3, the British driver has revealed that anti-stall kicked in as he went to exit the corner, leaving him swarmed by the cars behind.

Lando Norris undone by anti-stall

Norris told Sky Sports F1: “I just got a bit sideways and I just went into anti-stall, and I was revving at Turn 3. So that cost me everything. I don’t know why it happened.

“My Turn 3 was OK, I think, [I] obviously got close [to Verstappen and Perez] but I just went into anti-stall so I lost everything.

“I was basically in neutral just watching everyone drive past.”

Despite recovering to ninth at the finish, Norris was among the drivers who decided against pitting for slick tyres on the drying track and was passed by Nico Hulkenberg’s Haas and George Russell’s Mercedes in the closing laps.

With only the top-eight places paying points in the sprint race, Norris came away empty handed but leapt to the defence of McLaren’s strategy, insisting his chance of a strong result was really lost at Turn 3 on the first lap. recommends

Max Verstappen hits out at ‘not okay’ Sergio Perez Austria sprint incident

Lance Stroll demands Spa changes in emotional response to fatal crash

他解释说:“这是艰难的决定。人(who pitted for slicks] only managed to just get back through on the last lap.

“So it was tough, but it’s such a difficult one to know. You can look like heroes or either way, so it’s not like a yes-or-no answer. I’m happy with our decision of staying out and [if] there’s a Safety Car or something then the other guys look like idiots, but this way we look like idiots.

“It goes and comes your way sometimes. We lost one position, two positions on the last couple of laps but we all lost it really in Turn 3 on Lap 1.”

Norris and McLaren will have the opportunity to make amends in Sunday’s grand prix, with the 23-year-old set to start fourth – behind only Verstappen and the Ferraris of Charles Leclerc and Carlos Sainz.

Norris memorably claimed his first F1 podium with third place in Austria in 2020, matching the result in 2021.

He remains without a podium since the fourth round of the 2022 campaign at Imola.

Read next:Lando Norris defends female reporter after rude interjection in TV pen