British F1 driver Lando Norris blames his poor start after finishing behind Max Verstappen at Spanish Grand Prix

LANDO Norris was left to rue a botched start after the British F1 driver finished second behind Max Verstappen at Sunday’s Spanish Grand Prix.

The McLaren driver started the race on pole after a thrilling qualifying session, but a poor getaway saw Norris drop to third by the opening corner behind the Mercedes of George Russell and the Red Bull of Verstappen.

At the chequered flag Norris finished just 2.2 seconds behind the world champion Dutchman, but was left to pose the question of what could have been had the start gone better.

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Norris on the podium, accompanied by Verstappen and Hamilton. Credit: Cordon Press

Speaking to the media post-race, a frustrated Norris said: “Today we were the quickest, we had the best car, I had a nice car out there and I didn’t maximise it. The start is down to me and doing what I got told, and executing that. Without that, or with a good start, we easily should have won”. 

He added: “From turn two onwards, 10 out of 10, I don’t think I could have done much more and I think as a team we did the perfect strategy. I was very happy with what we did”.

Norris, who won his first ever Grand Prix at Miami last month, rose to second in the world drivers’ championship – he is now 69 points behind Verstappen, but insisted afterwards that his McLaren team could still fight for the title as they continue to improve.

Elsewhere, Lewis Hamilton finished third, reaching the podium for the first time in 12 races, admitting it was a ‘big boost’ after the longest drought of his illustrious career. 

Hamilton’s teammate, fellow Brit George Russell, finished fourth having lept to first on the opening lap after an audacious Turn 1 move at the Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya.

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