Going off the racing line in Miami means ‘game over’ – Motorsport Week
Lando Norris says it’s “game over” for any driver trying to get off the racing line on the Miami Formula 1 track.
F1 cars hit the new circuit for the first time on Friday as the sport travels to the Florida city for round five of the 2022 championship.
Several drivers spun throughout the two practice sessions, with Alfa Romeo’s Valtteri Bottas and Ferrari’s Carlos Sainz making contact with the barriers during the day.
With the venue’s asphalt being so new, the drivers took advantage of the practice session to lay down some rubber and form a more grippy surface – but outside the racing line there is little grip left for the drivers.
“The surface is also very tricky, you disconnect anywhere and it’s almost over, you turn, you end up in the wall,” Norris said.
“It’s punitive. That’s why you’ve seen a lot of people end up in the barriers.
“It’s a little weird. If you disconnect, it’s just terrible. I hope they can do something a little better. I do not know what.
“When they clean the track, it helps. There were a lot of marbles and other things [on Friday morning] and as soon as you logged out, the game was over.
The McLaren driver also commented on the bumpy nature of the circuit, which he admits came as a surprise to him: “I think everyone expected it to be very smooth and beautiful – but it’s not the case.”
Norris finished the second practice session in sixth place, and says Mercedes, who have struggled so far in 2022, appear to be far ahead of McLaren in Miami.
“We are not where we want to be and Mercedes are one step ahead of us. This is our most comparable team, with similar PUs.
“Mercedes has probably been one of the best cars in low-speed corners all season, but nobody looks at the GPS very well and ever picks it up.
“So [it’s] not a surprise in any way. It just makes us want to work even harder and try to beat them again.
“Being positive things have gone in the right direction, we just need it to go a bit more in the right direction. We’ll see where we end up.