Lando Norris acknowledged his “fussy” 2023 target would have been to take fourth place in the Drivers’ Championship, though he was pipped to that particular placing.
The McLaren driver finished the year just one point behind Fernando Alonso and Charles Leclerc in the standings, but the Briton is not giving too much pause to that, taking the mentality of ‘if you’re not first, you’re last’.
Even though it is three months until the new season gets underway, Norris cannot wait to get going again, with McLaren flying up the standings as the season went on.
Lando Norris: ‘I know we have some good things coming’ at McLaren
Norris took seven podiums in 2023, including a run of five in six races between Singapore and Brazil, with the McLaren driver looking the most likely challenger to Max Verstappen at times in the second half of the year.
Because of that trajectory, the 24-year-old is hopeful that McLaren can try and bring more of a test to Red Bull next season.
“I think from how much we’ve turned the season around, I have to be happy,” Norris told the F1 Nation podcast.
“But if I’m fussy, then of course, I wish I ended the season ahead of Fernando and ahead of Charles, but also in my head is if you’re not first, you’re last – so I’m not too bothered whether I was fourth or sixth in the championship as a driver.
“I’m happier for the team that they finished fourth and ahead of Aston, but that’s our main target, right?
“That’s what I’m here to deliver on, and then if I can end up having a good result as a driver, then that’s a bonus.
“It’s been a great year. I’m happy with how things turned out, especially from how we started.”
Having got to the end of the 2023 season with McLaren in the ascendancy, Norris acknowledged that the team are working behind the scenes to improve further still.
He admitted that everyone needs to take a breather after a mammoth 22-race schedule, but having seen what is to come for next year’s McLaren challenger, Norris is already counting down the days for what is ahead.
“I mean, it feels great, just because I know we have some good things coming,” Norris responded when asked how he felt to make it to the end of the year.
“We’ve had a great year, but we know that we can do a lot more. So at the same time, I don’t want to stop driving.
“I love doing it, I enjoy it, so I wish I could continue, but at the same time I want the break because I know we’re going to come back even stronger next year.
“So I kind of want next year to hurry up and get here already, but we all need a break.”