Lando Norris has revealed that overcoming his hatred of using a water bottle during a race proved to be his saviour during last weekend's Spanish Grand Prix.
Norris shrugged off a severe bout of tonsillitis to finish eighth at Barcelona's Circuit de Catalunya but only because he was able to take sips of his drink during the 66-lap event.
The illness has continued to plague the McLaren driver over the past week although he has improved day by day, leading to him clinching fifth on the grid for Sunday's Monaco Grand Prix.
Speaking for the first time after avoiding media duties since being diagnosed, asked by GPFans whether he had considered withdrawing from the Spanish GP, Norris replied: "There were certainly points, quite a few points.
"The one thing that really saved everything was the fact it was the first time I'd used a drinks bottle in the car.
"I tried using one when I first came into Formula 1 and I hated it. I'm not a fan of it all. I've never used one since, but [for Spain] we thought it would be a good idea to try, and it really saved me.
"On the warm-up lap before the start, I had to have a few sips because I was struggling. I had to keep sipping every lap, which is not a nice thing because it gets warm quickly.
"But without that, I probably wouldn't have made it past two, three laps. That was the rate of decline, physically, mentally, how much I was struggling. Just a few sips per lap managed to really save me quite a bit.
"Of course, it [not racing] crossed my mind many times. It was something that had to be taken into consideration with how much I was struggling.
"We did everything I could to make sure I was in the best place possible. We had to give it a try. I'd have hated to have finished the race weekend and not tried at least to have completed a few laps.
"That's not my mentality, so it crossed my mind many times, but decisions were made, and in the end, it was the correct one."
Norris "not 100 per cent"
Norris has declared himself to be "in a better place" going into the Monaco GP, even though he declared the tonsillitis has taken "a big toll" on him physically.
"I can eat and drink now which is something I couldn’t do last week," added Norris.
"I didn’t sleep at all last week and that is not something you can catch up on in a couple of days.
"I am not 100 per cent - you can see how red my face is - and there are a few things I am still struggling with.
"But I am better than I was, and I am confident when I am in the car that I am on top of things rather than being a passenger."