‘Pit crew not to blame’ for slow Norris stop

Henry Valantine
Lando Norris

McLaren team principal Andreas Seidl blamed a hardware issue slowed down Lando Norris' pit stop at Silverstone.

Andreas Seidl has said McLaren’s pit crew were not at fault for Lando Norris’ slow pit-stop at Silverstone because there was a hardware problem.

Seidl revealed a cross-threaded wheel nut led to the delay in the pit box for the Briton, whose six-second stop saw him fall behind the Mercedes of Valtteri Bottas in the fight for a podium place.

Norris earned his 15th consecutive points finish – an all-time McLaren record – by eventually coming home P4, but admitted his frustration at missing out through no fault of his own.

Seidl came to the defence of the team’s pit crew though, and said McLaren would be investigating how the issue was able to occur in the first place.

“After a series of really good pit-stops this year, unfortunately we had an issue,” the McLaren team principal said, quoted by GPFans. “There was a cross-threaded wheel nut and that delayed the pit stop to six seconds.

“It was the same crew as always and it was a hardware issue we had, nothing to do with the performance of the crew. They have done great pit-stops, especially in the last two months after we made a few steps forward.

“It’s something we haven’t seen for quite some time, so we need to analyse exactly what happened there, analyse the parts and see that we can make sure it doesn’t happen again.

“But let’s say thanks to all the training the crew did and the hardware improvements over the last couple of years also. It meant it was a delayed pit-stop but not a catastrophic pit-stop like we have seen in the past.

“Of course, you don’t want it to happen, but at least if it does it’s safe and it allowed us to stay in the race. In terms of the outcome of the race, that obviously finished the battle with Valtteri for Lando. If there was a chance to fight for P3 it is difficult to say.”

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Although Ferrari were able to slightly close the gap to McLaren in the Constructors’ Championship at the weekend through Charles Leclerc’s podium finish, Seidl said he is pleased with how the weekend went for the team as a whole.

“With pace, we have to be realistic,” he added. “Overall, for us [it was] obviously a very strong weekend, with P4 and P5 scoring important points in our battle for the Constructors’ Championship.

“A very strong drive all weekend from Lando and what I am very happy with as well is that Daniel [Ricciardo] could make a really good step forward in qualifying on Friday and then manage to pull off two good races, which is great to see.”