Norris: Silverstone would be ‘weird’ without fans

Jamie Woodhouse
Lando Norris says a British GP without fans would be "weird".

Lando Norris says a British GP without fans would be "weird".

Lando Norris says he would find it “weird” if Formula 1 ended up racing at his home event with no fans allowed.

In a bid to get the 2020 season underway as the COVID-19 pandemic continues to impact the world, Formula 1 are exploring the possibility of holding races behind closed doors with strict limits on the personnel in attendance.

The Austrian Grand Prix is reportedly going to open the season on July 5 at the Red Bull Ring, with a second round to follow on July 12.

The British Grand Prix at Silverstone is then scheduled for the weekend after with the race on July 19, but there has been talk of three races being held at the Northamptonshire track.

It remains a big if as to whether that could happen though with the death rate from COVID-19 now beyond 20,000 in the UK, and Norris says it would be “weird” to race at his home venue with no crowd.

“Silverstone is one of my favourite tracks and not just because it’s my home race” he told Mirror Sport.

“If it is behind closed doors it will be weird there not being anyone in the grandstands or any noise.”

Norris has been making up for the lack of real-life racing by stepping up his Esports action, and the 20-year-old says it isn’t lost on him how fortunate he is.

“I don’t have power but I have more possibilities than a lot of others to put myself in a good position,” he said.

“I’ve got a better opportunity than a lot of other people, I’m lucky because of that and in the situation I am. It’s trying to make the most of that and do what I can.”

Norris has been doing a lot of fundraising work for charity – he became ‘Baldo Norris’ live on Twitch as part of a fundraising effort, while he will also take part in the NHS Charities Cup, an online celebrity FIFA tournament which aims to raise at least £10m.

But he has developed a strong admiration for Britain’s oldest fundraising hero Captain Tom Moore who has raised over £28million for the NHS by walking 100 laps of his garden before his 100th birthday on April 30.

Norris recently had a video call with Captain Tom and invited the McLaren fan for a tour of their HQ.

“That was cool; a few years ago I would never have had an opportunity to speak to people like that,” Norris recalled.

“He’s raised over £28m, it just keeps going up, it’s stupidly insane. It’s so cool to see someone do something for so many people.

“The fact I got to speak to him and he’s a McLaren fan made it even cooler. We are going to try and get him down to McLaren HQ for a little tour once things are back to normal.

“I’m fortunate to be in the position to speak to people like that and it’s a little bonus to be in the place I am.

“It shows that if he can do 100 laps of his garden at 99 years old, almost 100 which just makes it even cooler – it’s not just inspired me but inspired so many people around the UK and the world.”

Follow us on Twitter @Planet_F1 and like our Facebook page.