Lando Norris has reasserted his commitment to the McLaren Formula 1 team amid concern over the pace of its 2023 car.
McLaren has admitted that its current spec car is not where it wants it to be, with CEO Zak Brown stating that it has missed development goals in the early stages of the year.
However, it is looking to in-season upgrades to boost its form as it targets a return to the top four in the championship standings after it fell to fifth in 2022.
Norris is contracted to McLaren until the end of 2025, having joined the squad in 2019.
The Briton, who is entering his fifth F1 season, is still yet to take his maiden race victory, having come close at the 2021 Russian Grand Prix.
After a difficult opening two days of testing in Bahrain, Norris has clarified that he has no regrets over committing himself to McLaren.
“I’m still here for a few more years. It’s because I want to be,” he told Sky F1. “It wasn’t because I knew we were going to be winning championships or anything.
“I knew that it’s a journey and we have to develop and improve on what we have to get to that point.
“We weighed up every possibility and there’s always a possibility that it takes longer than my contract. But I don’t think that’s a talking point for me at the minute.
“I’m the most patient guy but at the same time I’m happy with the work and the plans that the team are doing.”
Norris is joined at McLaren this year by rookie Oscar Piastri, following the departure of Daniel Ricciardo.
As the more seasoned driver, Norris will be tasked with leading the driver feedback and the development of the team, and he has backed McLaren to work efficiently to close the gap.
“There’s always developments in Formula 1,” he said. “We have what we have now and we have some better stuff coming.
“It’s always the game in Formula 1, how quickly you can find something new. Whatever the gap is to the top, although it can be many small things it’s never going to be something tiny.
“So of course we need to try a lot of different things and one good thing that the guys back at MTC and at the track are exploring [is] as many different avenues and things as possible.
“There’s always going to be some new things coming our way, some new ideas or philosophies. The more we can have the better.”
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