Norris expects friendship with Verstappen to 'be put to the test'

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Lando Norris and Max Verstappen have openly acknowledged their strong friendship, but the McLaren driver expects their affinity to be "put to the test" at some point in the future.

The pair's friendship developed over time in Formula 1 as their paths never crossed in the junior ranks of the sport due to Verstappen being two years older at 25.

Beyond the world of F1, Norris and Verstappen share a passion for sim racing, which further strengthens their connection. They both also reside in Monte-Carlo where they frequently share time together.

Norris believes that their similar mindset and common mentality, while it fuels their competitive spirit out on the track, also adds another layer to their camaraderie.

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At Silverstone, Verstappen was asked which driver among F1's elite he viewed as his "bestie", the Dutchman predictably singling out Norris.

"I’ll agree with that, I think me and Max are very good friends," commented Norris.

"I guess we’ve kind of grown up, not exactly together, we’ve never really raced against each other until Formula 1, but we’ve grown up in a similar generation, similar times and I think we’ve always got along.

"I think certain mentalities are similar in terms of we’re here because we love it, we want to enjoy every minute that we’re here in the paddock and driving cars that we love to drive.

"But as soon as you put the helmet on, you forget about everything else, and I think we have the correct amount of respect away from the track, where you can get along and be mates, whatever it is.

"It’s not like we see each other every day or text each other every day but we get along and sometimes bump into each other, go for dinners, or go for a crêpe, whatever it is."

Norris made clear that the pair's friendship off the track has no bearing on their resolve or determination to beat each other when racing wheel-to-wheel.

"I’m sure there’s nothing more than what he wants to do is just beat everyone and make everyone look silly, and it’s the same the opposite way around," added Norris.

"You don’t do anything differently, most likely, when you get in the car because we get along off track.

"We have the mentality of, you’re driving, you forget about everything, and off the track, you have a good amount of respect for each other. You can keep those two quite separate.

"But I’m sure if Max seems to be aggressive, or do things that don’t look friendly, then he’ll do them.

"I’m sure when my time comes, and we’re racing for wins or championships, then I’m sure it [their friendship] will get put to the test a little bit more."

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