The Unbelievable Transformation of McLaren: Verstappen Shares His Thoughts

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BARCELONA, SPAIN – JUNE 03: Pole position qualifier Max Verstappen of the Netherlands and Oracle Red Bull Racing and Third placed qualifier Lando Norris of Great Britain and McLaren attend the press conference after qualifying ahead of the F1 Grand Prix of Spain at Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya on June 03, 2023 in Barcelona, Spain. (Photo by Dan Mullan/Getty Images) // Getty Images / Red Bull Content Pool // SI202306030517 // Usage for editorial use only //
Last Updated on March 1, 2024

Max Verstappen, the Dutch Formula One driver of Red Bull Racing, praised McLaren’s incredible resurgence this year, from fighting for points to attaining podium finishes.

Verstappen said that it is good to see that when a competent car is available, a good job can be done, as Lando Norris finished second in two consecutive races.

Although McLaren had a difficult start to the season, Norris’s performance improved when the team introduced their major upgrade package in Austria and Silverstone.

Norris secured the first back-to-back podium finishes of his career, taking second place at his home race at Silverstone and in Hungary.

Verstappen admitted that he felt sorry for Norris at the beginning of the season. Still, he always knew what his rival was capable of, and his performance was not a surprise to him.

Sergio Perez, Verstappen’s Red Bull teammate, added that he expects to see Norris up here a lot more, as McLaren has done an incredible job so far.

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BUDAPEST, HUNGARY – JULY 23: Race winner Max Verstappen of the Netherlands and Oracle Red Bull Racing and Second placed Lando Norris of Great Britain and McLaren celebrate in parc ferme during the F1 Grand Prix of Hungary at Hungaroring on July 23, 2023 in Budapest, Hungary. (Photo by Peter Fox/Getty Images) // Getty Images / Red Bull Content Pool // SI202307230549 // Usage for editorial use only //

First of all, I think it’s quite incredible to see where they were in Bahrain and where they are now, McLaren. But I think Lando has done extremely well. But this is also not a surprise to me. It’s just good to see finally that when you have a competent car that you can do a good job and he’s here in P2, twice. It doesn’t need a number even.”

Max Verstappen

Verstappen’s Rating of Perez’s First Half of the Season

Verstappen was also asked to rate his teammate Perez’s first half of the season, who won two of the first four races and the Sprint in Baku to start the year.

However, Perez suffered a dip in form, which saw him miss out on Q3 for five races in a row, from Monaco to Silverstone. Verstappen responded that as a team in general, having won all the races so far, it has been good.

They are first and second in the championship, so there is nothing to worry about.

Verstappen also said that it doesn’t matter if it’s not perfect. It’s never perfect, but if it’s really good, it’s fine. The team just needs to keep on working, and sometimes, there are tough moments where mistakes happen.

However, these tough moments can teach a driver to become better, and they can move on by learning from them. Some things are also out of one’s control, and it’s essential to handle them by making the most of what one has.

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