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Norris' Miami victory capped off F1's best week in recent memory

Norris' Miami victory capped off F1's best week in recent memory

Norris' Miami victory capped off F1's best week in recent memory

Norris' Miami victory capped off F1's best week in recent memory

Lando Norris claiming his first Grand Prix victory will be the story everyone remembers from Formula 1's third trip to Miami.

The Briton streaking clear of Max Verstappen was not how many expected Sunday's race to end - but few can complain about Norris taking a well-overdue maiden win, and many will hope it's the beginning of a competitive season ahead.

READ MORE: F1 2024 Miami Grand Prix results: Norris STUNS Verstappen for historic victory

McLaren, understandably, will celebrate their first top-step finish since 2021 until the Imola weekend begins.

Yet the sport as a whole should be cheering for the entire Miami race week, of which Norris breaking his duck was just the final piece of a puzzle that should have fans filled with hope for a competitive future.

READ MORE: Verstappen MISTAKE triggers Miami safety car drama

Newey will leave Red Bull

Red Bull's loss is F1's gain

Speculation over Adrian Newey's longevity at Red Bull Racing predicated any Miami hype as leaks from Milton Keynes filtered into the media.

Was it true? Is he retiring? Has Fred Vasseur created a Ferrari Dream Team?

We only know the answer to the first question today. Newey stepping away from Red Bull after nearly two decades is a landscape-altering move akin to Lewis Hamilton leaving Mercedes.

There are many possibilities for his future, with Aston Martin and Williams joining Ferrari as potential destinations.

Even if it's a move into retirement, Red Bull is a weaker outfit without his aerodynamic genius, and his decision will gravely hurt them, no matter how much they will publicly downplay his role.

That's a sizeable bonus for all other teams in an era where generating underfloor downforce is the prerequisite for competitive performance, something Red Bull has enjoyed since 2022, thanks to Newey's aerodynamic genius.

Even if they continue to have an advantage once he departs in 2025, it's the end of the domination levels that have caused Grands Prix to become a foregone conclusion in recent years.

READ MORE: FIA announce HEAVY fine for F1 star after 'extremely dangerous' move

Antonelli is linked with Williams

When will Antonelli arrive in F1?

As the Newey exit announcement became official, another rumour rang through the paddock, and Williams was again in the thick of the discussions.

An FIA request to allow a super licence to the under-18 Andrea Kimi Antonelli suggested Joe Saward's post-China intel had some basis.

James Vowles, Williams' Team Principal, dampened any talk that Logan Sargeant would be out of the team in Imola, as initially suggested, but Antonelli is in his thoughts.

While other teams, including Mercedes, Antonelli's Junior Team backers, denied they asked the FIA to bend the rules, Williams had Vowles swerving the question in the press conference.

Whether you believe Antonelli is the second coming of Jesus, any mid-season driver swap is uncommon, and ones outside Red Bull's ecosystem are rare moments worthy of attention.

After seeing Oliver Bearman, Antonelli's F2 teammate, adapt so well to F1 machinery, the possibility of another young hopeful getting their chance to shine is an enticing prospect.

Should it pan out, it might be a harsh – perhaps premature – ending for Sargeant's F1 career, but there's no denying that it's always incredibly exciting to have new names racing at the top.

With Bearman and Antonelli's junior titles, either or both stepping up will see the grid continuing to strengthen and move away from weaker pay drivers, something fans have wanted for years.

READ MORE: Hamilton hit with SEVERE FIA penalty after clumsy Miami race

Norris won the Miami GP

A magical Miami GP

All this off-track action continued 2024's being a season where announcements beat racing in for entertainment.

Having Newey and Sargeant's futures to discuss must've felt like gifts for all commentators, especially considering the last Miami GP was rather dull when it became clear Verstappen would fight through the pack with relative ease.

However, random trivia and commentary booth debates weren't necessary in either of Miami's races, as the 20 drivers put on a show that might even help on-site fans forget the eye-watering prices they paid to watch the race.

Another two-pronged Haas approach in Sprint brought the American team points after Kevin Magnussen's penalty-attracting driving kept wheel-to-wheel action going through nearly all 19 laps.

Pierre Gasly and Esteban Ocon's all-Alpine Lap 1 fight suggested that the Grand Prix would have more of the same battling, too, and indeed, it did.

Ferrari and McLaren kept pace with the Red Bulls while all remaining cars duked it out for whatever points they could in some top-tier elbows-out racing.

Having Norris lead the race after the Safety Car had almost everyone watching feel some hope that he could finally take a well-earned first victory, but also knowing Verstappen behind would most likely ease by within two laps of the restart.

But then he didn't. And Norris began extending his advantage. The impossible turned into reality. After two seasons of single-driver dominance, hopes of actual competition prevailed.

It's too soon to say whether this is the start of a revolution that sees multiple drivers and teams fighting for victory, but we can hope. And remember where hope got us on Sunday...

READ MORE: Ricciardo suffers MAJOR Miami setback amid F1 penalty woes

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Max Verstappen McLaren Lando Norris Adrian Newey Miami Grand Prix Imola
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