The winner of the McLaren Autosport BRDC award Lando Norris has revealed that he held talks with other Formula One sides about the possibility of enlisting in their young driver programmes.
He has won four titles in his two years and became part of the junior team in McLaren this February after his exploits.
The former karting world champion also won the Formula Renault Eurocup, the NEC and MABA. The MABA includes a privilege of a formula 1 test, a paid simulator role and a fitness programme to aid his career. He won the opening encounter with Carlin at the Formula 3 European Championship at Silverstone.
Norris says before he joined McLaren he had contact with other teams.
“We had a few discussions with a few teams – Red Bull, Renault and Mercedes. It wasn’t so much on just wanting to get on a junior programme; it was more about getting to know what they could offer and what opportunities they could offer in the future. In that sense, McLaren was by far the best,” the 17-year old talent said.
He attributed the location of McLaren in England as a plus but he addedthat their future opportunities helped him make the decision. McLaren promoted juniors Kevin Magnussen and StoffelVandoorne recently so his hopes are well placed. He would be joining Formula 2 racers Nyck de Vries and Nobuharu Matsushita in the programme.
Norris said McLaren has the best record of helping young drivers into the F1 programme and that the drivers have a certain level of control that he admires.
“McLaren offer a lot more, and believe in their drivers when they have the chance to get to F1,” he added.