Lando Norris laments ‘silly’ error as huge chance goes begging in Miami

Jamie Woodhouse
A close-up shot of Lando Norris facing questions in teh post-qualifying press conference in Japan

McLaren driver Lando Norris

After topping the opening two stages of Sprint qualifying in Miami, it all unravelled for Lando Norris come SQ3, leaving the McLaren driver far from pleased with himself.

Norris is at the wheel of the heavily-upgraded McLaren MCL38 for this Sprint weekend in Miami and the Brit was putting it to full use by topping the SQ1 and SQ2 segments, making him favourite to secure pole for the 19-lap race.

Lando Norris fell into negative ‘spiral’ in Miami

However, the switch to soft tyres for the final stage saw McLaren drop off the pace dramatically, with Norris forced to settle for P9 on the grid with team-mate Oscar Piastri P6.

And Norris was quick to hold his hands up for that very disappointing end result.

“I just pushed too hard, as simple as that,” he revealed.

“The car was feeling very good, yeah, just silly to be honest. A couple of mistakes in Turn 1 and just big spiral from there.

“A shame, because the team has done a good job, the upgrades are working, so I’m happy with everything, just not with one thing.

“I mean, the pace was very good.

“Probably one of the quickest, so disappointed with today, but I’ll do my best tomorrow.” recommends

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McLaren Racing CEO Zak Brown feels his team has some homework to do regarding that soft tyre after their Sprint qualifying disappointment, suggesting that the “preparation” for SQ3 was not where it needed to be.

However, he remains confident that McLaren can take those lessons learned and make the rest of their race weekend a far more positive story.

“We didn’t get the softs to work on either car,” he admitted, “so we’ll have to look at kind of how we brought them in on that last lap.

“I don’t think either driver felt they nailed it, but I don’t think our preparation for that last run was where it needed to be.

“So a little disappointing based on Q1, Q2, but we learned, I think we will qualify better tomorrow and we’ve got good race pace.”

McLaren’s SQ3 issues opened the door for Red Bull’s Championship leader Max Verstappen to snatch pole, an achievement which left him rather surprised to say the least.

Read next: ‘LOL, what happened to the others?’ – Max Verstappen reacts to ‘terrible’ Miami Sprint pole