A Noob to F1, Even Lando Norris’ Gamer Friend Has a Better Strategy for McLaren After Nightmare in Japan

A Noob to F1, Even Lando Norris' Gamer Friend Has a Better Strategy for McLaren After Nightmare in Japan
Credits: Imago/Motorsport Images

Lando Norris secured a brilliant P3 finish in qualifying ahead of the Japanese GP, but things went downhill for him in the race. The Brit started the race brilliantly maintaining his position on the medium compound tires. However, Norris was the first to pit among the front runners. The McLaren man came out in 10th with a set of hard compounds, putting him on a two-stop strategy which eventually ruined his race. Norris finished in P5 behind the Red Bulls and the Ferraris as he questioned the team’s strategy after the race. Not just Norris, but an F1 outsider, like Angry Ginge had a better strategy and was perplexed by the Woking-based outfit’s decision.

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For those unaware, Angry Ginge is a YouTuber famous for his hilarious reaction rants on various topics. Angry Ginge, who is also Norris’ friend, recently started following F1 which was also the topic of his latest video. The viral YouTuber reacted to the Japanese GP and was angry at McLaren’s flawed strategy which ruined his friend’s race.

Ginge reacted to McLaren’s decision of pitting Norris on lap 12, which demoted him to P10 from P3. Even an F1 fresher like Angry Ginge saw how the early pitstop was a horrendous decision. When he saw Norris come out of the pits in the highlights, he said, “Who is he? He’s a bit late, who is he? NORRIS!! 10th!!! What’s he doing? (x2) He shouldn’t have pit stopped. He shouldn’t have gone for a pit, should he?

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He went back a few seconds and continued, “Because if you have a look here. And I’m not a genius, Lando Norris third. Goes for a pit, he’s not 10th. What is he doing? Honestly. What on Earth is he doing? Who’s told him to go and do that?” The F1 novice clearly did not agree with McLaren’s strategy which eventually hurt Norris’s race.

In the post-race presser, Norris said to Sky Sports, “I’m kind of surprised we boxed as early as we did, to be honest with you. Because that just put it in line with what Ferrari did. This is something we’ll discuss during the briefing.”

So it’s an F1 noob and the driver himself against the team’s strategy in Suzuka. If this isn’t enough to prove that the race result was McLaren’s own doing, let us highlight F1 expert Bernie Collins’ comments.

Bernie Collins sides with Lando Norris over McLaren’s failed strategy

Bernie Collins, an ex-F1 strategist turned pundit, sided with Norris on his early pitstop remark. She expressed her opinion in the post-race analysis, claiming that it wasn’t the two-stop strategy but the timing of it that the McLaren strategists got wrong.

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She highlighted how in a high tire degradation track like Suzuka, the Woking-based outfit pitted Norris four laps earlier compared to the man he was ahead of, Carlos Sainz. This led to a domino effect and Norris was called in again for a second time, 10 laps before Sainz. With high degradation, an additional 10 laps puts Norris at a massive disadvantage.

The disadvantage is exactly why Norris lost out to both Ferrari men. He could’ve been ahead of Charles Leclerc as the Monegasque was on a one-stop strategy. However, he did not have the grip to catch or even fight Leclerc as McLaren pitted him at the same time as the Monegasque. This took away Norris’s last stint advantage over the one-stop strategy as he went backward during the race.

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