Martin Brundle ‘fascinated’ by Max Verstappen’s loss to Lando Norris

Michelle Foster
McLaren's Lando Norris chats with Red Bull's Max Verstappen at the Japanese Grand Prix.

McLaren's Lando Norris chats with Red Bull's Max Verstappen.

Scoring a mere six percent of the Brazilian Grand Prix’s ‘Driver of the Day’ votes, Max Verstappen lost to Lando Norris despite beating him in the race.

Introduced in 2016, Formula 1’s ‘Driver of the Day’ is awarded to the driver who receives the most votes from fans during each Grand Prix.

It has, it’s fair to say, almost nothing to do with the result but rather the opinion of the fans as to who was the star of that particular show.

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So far this season McLaren driver Norris has scored the most votes five times, with Verstappen and his teammate Perez next in line tied on three.

But given that Verstappen has won 17 Grands Prix, Perez two and Norris has yet to get off the mark, it’s clear being P1 on the track isn’t the deciding factor for the voters.

Brundle finds it quite fascinating, especially as Norris’ latest award came last Sunday in Brazil where he was second to Verstappen on a day the Red Bull driver set a new record for the most wins in a single season, broke Alberto Ascari’s win percentage record, and overhauled Alain Prost on the all-time win list.

“Lando Norris would take a point for fastest lap and yet again the fans’ ‘Driver of the Day’ with 26.7 percent of the vote,” he said in his Sky Sports column.

“The driver who dominated the weekend like he’s dominated the past two seasons, and who surpassed Alain Prost with 52 victories, was fourth most popular with just six percent of the vote.

“I don’t know how many people actually vote but I find all that quite fascinating to say the least.” recommends

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Perhaps more of a popularity contest combined with a good showing in a Grand Prix, Norris has delighted his fans with his thanks after the races.

Told by McLaren that he had received the most votes in Austria, he replied: “No? Really? Aw that’s cute.

“It’s because there’s so many papaya fans here. Thank you everyone who, uh, voted me ‘Driver of the Day’!”

That, though, doesn’t mean he has been perplexed by some of the decisions, especially after losing to Sergio Perez in Hungary.

Norris told Sky F1: “He got driver of the day? What the hell.”
Sky: “You need to work harder…”
Norris quipped: “I need a quicker car!”

This year’s award has also gone to Oscar Piastri, Alex Albon, Lewis Hamilton and Fernando Alonso, even Esteban Ocon has one ‘Driver of the Day’ to his name.

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