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Norris itching to unlock Mercedes PU potential to "see what the baby's got"

Norris itching to unlock Mercedes PU potential to "see what the baby's got"

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Norris itching to unlock Mercedes PU potential to "see what the baby's got"

Norris itching to unlock Mercedes PU potential to "see what the baby's got"

Lando Norris has hailed "the smooth operation" in McLaren's switch to a Mercedes power unit over the winter and is anxious to discover its true performance.

McLaren was steady if unspectacular across the three days of pre-season testing at the Bahrain International Circuit but that was done to ensure there was no undue stress placed on the team's integration of the Mercedes PU.

After switching from Renault to Mercedes power, Norris can feel the difference and appreciates complete knowledge of the system will take time.

Asked whether the new engine had matched expectations and delivered a boost compared to Renault, Norris replied: "Yes, altogether I think it's been a very smooth operation with the Mercedes guys so far. We're happy with how things have gone.

"The bit for me is understanding all the new switches and ways of working. That's one of the biggest things to get used to. On the whole, it's that little step forward in a lot of areas, but some areas still need some work.

"To understand the Mercedes engines it's going to take us a while. It's about getting used to things.

"We're coming from Renault with fresh minds, a different perspective, different feelings and I really like we've been able to add and improve in some areas.

"So [it has been] very productive between ourselves and the Merc guys from HPP [High Performance Powertrains], and I think we can be happy with the improvements we've made.

"Still things to work on, not just with the car, but with the PU and so on, but we're happy with the way things have gone.

"We will have to wait until qualifying to unlock the full potential and see what the baby's got."

On a personal level, Norris feels he could not be going into the season-opening race in Bahrain on March 28 in a better place.

"I feel like it was a productive three days, not just for the team but also for myself," added Norris.

"I've been working on a lot of things with my engineers, my team around me, getting to know a few new faces, one being Daniel [Ricciardo], and two, the Mercedes guys.

"It's been good. I'm happy, I feel confident, I came in with a better plan this year than the last two years. I feel more confident, more ready, so I'm happy."

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