McLaren rejects offer to lend Norris to Toro Rosso!


McLaren has declined an offer from Toro Rosso which would have seen Lando Norris replace Brendan Hartley from next month's Austrian Grand Prix!

Hailed as Britain's next great F1 star, Norris is currently racing with Carlin in F2 but contracted to McLaren as its reserve driver.

Hatley's struggles to perform in F1 since his surprise promotion to Toro Rosso in the latter part of last year have led to speculation about the Kiwi's short term future.

The 28-year-old former Porsche works driver and Le Mans winner claimed to be baffled by the exit rumors despite their persistence.

Toro Rosso's alleged plan was to slot in the on-loan Norris into Hartley's seat and hopefully extend the deal with McLaren into next season.

With Fernando Alonso's chances of remaining in F1 appearing to dwindle, and Stoffel Vandoorne's future with the Woking-based outfit also uncertain, Norris appears to be well-placed for a logical promotion to the big time in 2019, especially in light of McLaren's rejection of Toro Rosso's offer.

However, as former BBC F1 presenter Jake Humphrey noted on Twitter, McLaren may not have been too keen on the idea of its reserve driver beating its race drivers with a car powered by an engine it was only too happy to get rid of.

If anything, the rumors also point to increasing pressure on Hartley, who could become the next dispensable driver victim of the ruthless Mr. Marko.

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