Lando Norris isn’t prepared to say that matching Lewis Hamilton’s Formula 1 records is “impossible”, but their careers are “incomparable”.
Norris is impressing in his rookie season with McLaren, much like Hamilton did who has since gone on to claim five World Championships and a who’s who of Formula 1 records in the process.
It’s understandable then that Norris would be touted as someone who could follow the same career path as Hamilton, but he insists their situations are “incomparable”.
Hamilton walked into McLaren when they were fighting for the title – he claimed the crown in 2008 but was forced to wait until 2014 for his second Championship after joining Mercedes the season prior.
Norris meanwhile is racing for a McLaren team trying to recover up the midfield order after several wretched seasons.
Asked by GrandPrix247.com if he could see himself matching Hamilton’s achievements, Norris said: “Not really, he joined McLaren when they were in a very different way. They could win races, now we can’t… Not yet! So it’s incomparable.
“As much as one day I’d love to be able to achieve what he has, people are always in different situations in life. I’m in a different situation to what he was, so I’m not saying it’s impossible but it’s just incomparable, basically.
“It’s weird thinking again how far away F1 would ever be and then thinking straight to now ‘I’m in Formula 1’ not really racing against Lewis, but we’re on the same track.
“In Austria, we did fight very briefly, which was cool. Hopefully, I can do more of it! It’s cool because it’s not something I believed I could really do, then getting the opportunity now and thinking how amazing it was to maybe one day race them, and now here I am with McLaren.”
Norris joined the Woking team in 2017 after winning the McLaren Autosport BRDC award a year earlier which earned him a test at Silverstone, and that along with his F2 and free practice experience has helped him hit the ground running in his first season of Formula 1.
“Because I had been with them [McLaren] for two-and-a-half years almost I felt more at ease with that kind of thing,” he explained.
“When I first joined, it’s a big place with so many people, a lot of history, you kind of feel a bit intimidated but yeah, because I did some FP1s, because I did testing, I was at a lot of the race weekends last year either doing F2 or when I wasn’t I was still doing FP1, so I had a nice introduction and knew everyone, and that made it much easier for me to take the step into the seat.”