Lando Norris has questioned whether the run-off around the final two turns of the Hockenheimring was safe enough for Formula 1, with the McLaren F1 Team racer experiencing its incredible lack of grip on his way to the grid!
The Formula 1 rookie wanted to experiment with the grip levels there on his way to his grid slot before the race but almost found himself crashing and eliminating himself from proceedings before they even began, with the Briton admitting it gave him quite a fright.
During the race, both Charles Leclerc and Nico Hülkenberg crashed out after running off track there in difficult conditions, while Lewis Hamilton, Kimi Räikkönen and Norris’ team-mate Carlos Sainz Jr. were able to continue despite wild moments of their own.
Norris, who eventually retired from the race with an apparent power unit issue on his MCL34, said he did not tell anyone about the grip levels as he wanted others to find out for themselves in order for him to profit from their mistakes, but he admits the wet drag strip did not slow anyone down due to the amount of water it held during the race.
“We have an onboard we have to watch, of one magic lap from Fernando [Alonso] when he was at Ferrari, and he goes two wheels onto the kerb onto the drag strip,” Norris is quoted as saying by Motorsport.com.
“On my lap to the grid I tried it, and I genuinely thought I was going to be out of the race before I’d even started. I pulled the clutch in, full opposite lock – and I’m not exaggerating, I **** myself. I was like “oh ****, this is not gonna be good.”
“All the guys were waiting there to put me on my jacks and into position, and it was the biggest fright of my life. So yeah, from my side I knew that straight away, obviously I wasn’t gonna tell anyone because I’ll let them try it out, but every person that made a small mistake, lost it or understeered in the last two corners went onto the drag strip and you just see there’s nothing you can do.
“It’s probably quite dangerous to be honest, because you just don’t slow down, there’s tarmac run-off there that you’re approaching at a decent speed. And once you hit it, you can’t do anything. It’s something I think needs to be changed for next time.”