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Norris "expecting pain" for McLaren after scoreless start to season

Norris "expecting pain" for McLaren after scoreless start to season

Norris "expecting pain" for McLaren after scoreless start to season

Norris "expecting pain" for McLaren after scoreless start to season
Ian Parkes & Ewan Gale

Lando Norris has conceded he is expecting further "pain" for McLaren after a dismal Bahrain Grand Prix weekend.

McLaren left the first F1 test in Barcelona with expectations high for a battle with Ferrari, Red Bull and Mercedes in the top four.

But after failing to qualify in the top 10 for the season-opener, the team endured a trying race to start the season.

Norris finished 15th, a place behind team-mate Daniel Ricciardo with both cars falling to the back of the field early on after the team elected to start both drivers on the medium tyres.

Asked if he was anticipating a lengthy dry period given McLaren's struggles, Norris replied: "I am expecting pain and I think everyone needs to know there is going to be a bit of pain.

"As McLaren and myself, we expect a lot more but it is just not what we have at the minute. We have to get used to it.

"I guess we have been in this position a few years ago and I am hoping we can remain optimistic the team and everyone back at the MTC can figure things out and we can get back on track."

Norris refuses to use Mercedes power as excuse for troubles

Mercedes has long dominated the powertrains-side of F1 but at one point in the race, all six cars powered by the Silver Arrows power unit run by Williams, Aston Martin and McLaren occupied the last six places on the road.

On how much of a factor the power unit was on McLaren's lack of pace, Norris insisted: "If you complain about that, you still have a Merc in third and fourth.

"It certainly is not helping so I think we are definitely lacking on that end comparing to the other guys but I mean I saw some other problems for the other guys as well so the reliability is good so I guess that is a positive at the minute.

"But simply, just our car is just a long way down on downforce. The handling, therefore, is very poor.

"It is a tricky car and tricky tyres to optimise and when you don't have the downforce, you can't get the tyres working well and can't get everything in the right window, so you are understeering and oversteering and there is a lot more things going on and that's the problem.

"We need less things to be going on and we need more rear and more front. We need more downforce really. It sounds simple but it is complicated to figure out."

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