Lando Norris said his McLaren team is ready to “give it everything” to secure third in the championship in what will be an “intense” triple-header of final races.
The British driver's team is five points behind third-placed Racing Point, with Renault 13 points behind them. Ferrari is just six points further back after closing in on the fight with a strong scoring finish in Turkey.
McLaren has lost out to its rivals in the last six races since Carlos Sainz claimed a podium at the Italian Grand Prix, collecting 50 points compared to Racing Point’s 72, Ferrari’s 69 and Renault’s 65.
Norris, who recovered from a poor grid spot to finish eighth and set the fastest lap at the last race in Turkey, said: “Turkey showed that we’re still in the fight and anything can happen. We just need to make every session count and most of all focus on ourselves.
"We’re going to give it everything. We’re ending the season just like we started it with one final triple-header, and I can’t wait get back into the rhythm of racing back-to-back again.
“It’s definitely going to be a tough challenge. Last season Bahrain was one of my best races and it’s where I scored my first F1 points. Hopefully we can continue to score some important points this weekend.”
Sainz, who will leave the team to join Ferrari next season, overtook Norris in the drivers’ championship standings with a fifth-place finish in Turkey but said he is fully focused on the team despite his imminent departure.
“As a team we’re prepared and ready to go racing,” he said. “It’s an intense final triple-header. Consistency is key and we will fight until the chequered flag in Abu Dhabi.“
Team boss Andreas Seidl is confident the team is well prepared and said they will draw on experience from the previous triple-header of races that started the year to form their plan for this set.
“Looking back to the start of the season, we know what to expect with already having three triple-headers under our belts,” he said. “The challenges that come with this intense format remain the same and we’re ready for the task ahead.
“We know how strong our competitors are, so our focus is to extract everything we can out of the car, stay on top of reliability, maximise any opportunities and continue to keep scoring important points.”
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