Lando Norris was on the edge of his seat, eyes glued to the massive TV screens scattered around the Silverstone circuit, hoping to secure an unexpected pole position at the British Grand Prix. The crowd erupted in cheers as Norris clocked in the fastest lap time, but the joy was short-lived as Max Verstappen snatched pole back just seconds later with a blistering lap time of 1:26.720, leaving Norris 0.2s behind.
In good spirits, Norris jokingly remarked, “Always Max! He always ruins everything for everyone.” Reflecting on his performance, he shared, “Pretty insane, my last lap was a good lap. I could hear Zak [Brown, McLaren CEO] on the radio on the in-lap, which was the best thing ever.”
Although Verstappen spoiled Norris’ hopes for pole position, the McLaren driver managed to secure second place on the grid, with his teammate Oscar Piastri finishing an impressive third. When asked if he ever thought he had a shot at pole, Norris admitted he was surprised by his high position.
“There’s a lot of TV screens around the circuit, I was trying to watch every single one possible. I was surprised how long I stayed in the top four,” Norris confessed. “It just kind of depended on when Max was going to cross the line. I guess I’m a little bit surprised, I wasn’t expecting for us to be here, or myself to be here anyway. We’re very happy with the result.”
Norris acknowledged that his chances for pole relied more on Verstappen‘s potential mistake rather than his outright speed. Despite that, he drove a clean lap with no errors, a much smoother performance compared to his earlier runs in Q3. “It was a good quali, I think P1 in Q1, I think P1 in Q2 and almost P1 in Q3, but not quite. But I’m still happy with that,” Norris added.
For Piastri, securing third place on the grid marked the best result of his rookie F1 career. The Australian driver expressed his satisfaction with the team’s performance, saying, “It’s been a great day, even this weekend, we thought we could get into the top 10 at least. When the conditions were looking like they were, it’s generally been solid for us previously. I think we went in quietly confident that we could pull off something pretty special and we managed to do it. Great performance myself, but for us to be second and third was amazing for the whole team.”