Lando Norris looking forward to learning from Alonso

Lando Norris
© XPB 

It's been a big year for Lando Norris. He's not only won the European Formula 3 Championship, he's also been appointed McLaren's new test and development driver for 2018.

Next year could be even bigger for the 18-year-old. He'll combine his McLaren role with a full campaign in Formula 2. And he starts off the year with his first sportscar outing in the Rolex 24 Hours at Daytona.

That seems him partnered with two-time world champion Fernando Alonzo at United Autosports. He can't wait for the chance to soak up as much as possible from the Spaniard.

“I’ll get to know a lot more about the work ethic of a Formula 1 driver," Norris told the McLaren F1 website. "Even though he’ll be driving a different car, he’ll still want to do as well as he can.

"He’ll particularly want to beat his team-mates, and he’ll work as hard as he can to improve the car. Wherever I can, I’ll try and take onboard everything he does."

Norris added that much of the appeal of racing in Daytona next month was to work alongside Alonso.

“Obviously, I’d like to do well," he said. "But I think it’s a more of good opportunity to learn from Fernando. I definitely don’t want to let that opportunity go to waste.

“But, at the same time, I’d like to prove what I can do against him, especially in qualifying," he continued.

"Daytona is a team game, so I realise that we’ll be sharing the seat and working together. But I’d like to think there’ll be a bit of a competition about who can do a better job in practice and qualifying.

"Whoever does the best has done the best, but it’s still a great opportunity to learn not from him."

As for himself, Norris knows that he needs to shine once again when it comes to Formula 2 if he's to continue his ascent into Formula 1. This year's F2 champion Charles Leclerc will be on the Grand Prix grid with Sauber in Australia.

“The aim is to win [the title] but I think that’s going to be quite tough." he admitted. "I think top three would be more realistic. But I said that this year [in F3] and ended up winning!

"The other day, I said if I wanted to prove I were as good as Charles Leclerc or better, then I needed to win," he said. "But F2 is a much tougher category than F3, with a lot more variables.

"It’ll be tougher to win as many races as in the past, but Leclerc has proved he can do it.

“It’s hard to say until I get to the first race. But I’m confident in what the [Carlin] team can do."

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