Lando Norris, McLaren‘s ace Formula One driver, has called for stricter actions against those who hinder their fellow racers, expressing concern that, “no one seems to care enough.” His comments came on a Thursday briefing, adding a different perspective in the world of professional racing.
Max Verstappen, Red Bull‘s chief driver and the current leade-boat in the championship, was summoned three times to the stewards for blocking during the qualifying rounds in Singapore last weekend. Notwithstanding, Verstappen only received official warnings but no consequential grid penalty.
Norris, who is friendly with Verstappen off-the-track, holds the view that the Dutch driver’s impeding of AlphaTauri‘s Yuki Tsunoda should not have gone unpunished. Norris related, “I think the blocking one on track was the one that should have been a penalty. He blocked someone.”
He also voiced his belief that teams and drivers should be accountable for such hindrances. Norris commented, “I know the team got the fine in the end of the day, but it should be down to the driver as well to look at his mirrors…” According to Norris, a driver’s responsibilities entail watching out for other racers, which isn’t always the case, thereby ruining qualifying sessions for others.
Responding to these incidents, the stewards opted to reprimand Verstappen, proceeding without the representative of Red Bull‘s sister team, who was not in attendance at the hearing.
Separately, Verstappen explained his position to the reporters, stating that each situation is distinct. He shared, “The only thing I can say about Singapore is that I explained what happened when I was sitting in the car, and the information that was given to me … and then it’s up to the stewards to make that call.”
Complications continued as the two-time world champion was also reprimanded for impeding rivals at the pitlane’s end while he waited for an opening on the track. However, he was exonerated from impeding Logan Sargeant, a Williams team driver, who told the stewards that he didn’t think the champion was to blame.
Norris punctuated his opinions on the notable rise in impeding incidents this season, stating, “Just no one seems to care enough. And it’s happened a lot this season, it’s happened to me quite a few times, especially with certain teams.”
Adding an element of humor to the situation, Norris wagered, “I’ll probably block someone now this weekend and make myself look stupid.”