Lando Norris is delighted to prove the doubters wrong and expects more victories to come after securing the maiden triumph of his Formula 1 career.

The British racer stormed to his first Grand Prix win around the Miami International Autodrome circuit earlier this month, finishing over seven and a half seconds ahead of reigning world champion Max Verstappen who had dominated four of the first five races of the 2024 season.

Norris taking the chequered flag first marked McLaren’s first full Grand Prix win since Daniel Ricciardo led the way in the 2021 Italian Grand Prix, and the 24-year-old from Bristol believes this is just the start for both him and his team.

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Highlights of the Miami Grand Prix where Lando Norris became the 21st driver from the United Kingdom to win a Formula 1 race.

“I said at the beginning of the year we could win races,” Norris said. “A lot of people doubted what I could say and the fact that I said that; I think they doubted that McLaren could win races, they doubted that I could win races, but I was confident.

“Deep down I knew that we had our time coming, so the team have done an amazing job. We weren’t even into Q2 here last year, so now the fact we’re on top, we’ve won a race, the team have done an insane job to kind of go from where we were to where we are now – and we’ve chipped away, especially the last couple of months.

“Whenever you bring an upgrade, it’s not easy to kind of just go out and execute and just show that it’s better. But little things come together and when you have all these little bits coming together, it turns into a perfect day like it did [in Miami].

“So, I would like to say it’s the start and now I’m already hungry for more, but we’ll keep our heads down, we’ll keep pushing and I’m sure we can be here a lot more often.”

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Lando Norris felt the chance to win in Miami was on as soon as the safety car came out as he knew his pace was good.

Prior to his Miami victory, Norris had finished on the podium 15 times in his six seasons racing in F1 including eight second places.

Incidents like the 2021 Russian Grand Prix, where he led most of the race but ended up finishing seventh after delaying a switch from slick to intermediate tyres when rain began to fall, had been used as a cudgel by his critics who doubted he had what it takes to be a winner in F1.

The former European Formula 3 champion answered those critics in emphatic style in Florida though and put it down to a change in his approach he adopted ahead of the 2024 season.

“Russia ’21 was a very, very different situation to today,” Norris said. “A lot of people talk rubbish about Sochi and the things which went on.

I said at the beginning of the year we could win races. A lot of people doubted what I could say and the fact that I said that; I think they doubted that McLaren could win races, they doubted that I could win races, but I was confident.

Lando Norris

“A lot of people doubted that I could go out and win races and perform under the pressure of leading the race, especially with Max behind you and those types of things, but really this year I felt more confident than ever.

“I wasn’t thinking of these things. Probably last year I would have thought of it, but this year I’ve been much better with just kind of keeping my mind focused and focusing on my job. I’m doing a good job. I’m fast and I’m executing things exactly how I want to do.

“I’ve improved on a lot of my weaknesses and all that hard work has paid off. So no, I wasn’t thinking of that thing. I was smiling, and I was thinking ‘How am I going to celebrate? What am I going to say?’.”

Norris and McLaren had a short time to savour his win ahead of the Emilia-Romagna Grand Prix at Imola, live on Sky Sports this weekend, and build on the success of the upgrade package for the MCL38 they brought to Miami.

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Lando Norris proved what a popular person he is after so many drivers were quick to say how happy they were for the Brit to earn his first Grand Prix win.

He is the 114th driver in Formula 1 history to win a Grand Prix and Norris admits it is a big weight off his mind to join those ranks.

“As much as I want to say no, it’s a yes,” Norris said. “To get that first victory is always incredible, and I’ve, of course, had my moments where we’ve been close, and I’ve never been able to convert it into the win, but I wasn’t worried.

“As much as a lot of people doubted that I was going to be able to put it together and win a race, I wasn’t worried. I’ve kind of been more confident than ever this year that I’ve got what it takes, and the team have got what it takes, and I was patient with it.

“I’ve just been doing my job and executing my races, executing my qualis, and doing what I can do best – and I knew my time was coming.”

Formula 1 heads to Europe as Imola returns to the calendar following last year’s cancelled race. Watch the Emilia Romagna GP on May 17-19. Stream every F1 race and more with a NOW Sports Month Membership – No contract, cancel anytime

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