Lando Norris was helped to an impressive fifth place finish at the Austrian Grand Prix by the introduction of a significant upgrade package to the McLaren MCL60.

McLaren launched the first phase of an intensive overhaul of its 2023 competitor in Austria with Norris receiving a fully redesigned floor, sidepods and engine cover.

Norris’ team-mate Oscar Piastri was left without the latest developments, but is expected to be in receipt of the new components in the coming races.

Further developments to the MCL60 are due to be introduced ahead of the Hungarian Grand Prix at the end of the month.

Norris was delighted with his performance at the Austrian Grand Prix, stating: “Very good day for us. I didn’t expect us to be quite as good.

Lando Norris, McLaren MCL60, leaves his pit box

“I was a little bit nervous going into the race about what to expect and how we were going to do and how the pace of the car was going to be.

“It was a good surprise. It [the upgrades] definitely helped us to achieve the result today. The upgrade has definitely helped us take a big step forward.

“I’m very happy, good amount of points and a good reward for the whole team.”

Norris found himself battling with the front running teams, and notably bettering Lewis Hamilton who, along with Mercedes, endured a difficult weekend in Spielberg.

When asked whether he was surprised to be faster than Mercedes, Norris told the media: “Maybe not Mercedes, they didn’t look good all weekend, so to Mercedes no which is a nice thing to [see].

“Did I expect to be quicker than Astons? I’d probably say no.

“They’ve also not looked super quick on one lap all weekend but usually their race pace is strong and today it was, but we were just kind of quick enough and could build up enough of a gap early in the stint that he didn’t catch up at the end to get past me. Pros and cons.”

Carlos Sainz Jr (ESP) Ferrari SF-23 and Lando Norris (GBR) McLaren MCL60 battle for position.
02.07.2023. Formula 1 World Championship, Rd 10, Austrian Grand Prix, Spielberg, Austria, Race Day.
–, EMail: © Copyright: Coates / XPB Images

With attention now turning to next weekend’s British Grand Prix, confidence is high for Norris and McLaren.

“100%, the car’s quicker, it’s quicker everywhere, it’s just difficult to drive still,” Norris added.

“If we had a nicer car to drive, one a bit easier, bigger working range to work in, I think we can take another big step forward, especially in consistency and race pace and so on. And even on one lap pace.

“Plenty of things to work on, more things coming next weekend, I don’t want to get ahead of ourselves, this has always been our best race of the whole year so I’ll maker sure I’ll let the team know that just to keep our heads down for next weekend.”

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