Lando Norris: FP1 runs will help 2019 prospects
ando Norris says his spate of FP1 runs through the second half of this season will assist him in getting up to speed during his Formula 1 rookie campaign in 2019.
McLaren protégé Norris will graduate to a race seat next year – linking up with current Renault driver Carlos Sainz Jr. – and has received substantial track time through 2018.
Along with official test days in Spain and Hungary, as well as tyre test outings with Pirelli, Norris has participated in FP1 sessions in Belgium, Italy, Russia and Japan.
The Briton is set for further practice runs across the rest of 2018, including in Abu Dhabi, which will take place alongside his commitments in his Formula 2 swansong.
“A lot of this is preparation for myself next year,” Norris said on his practice sessions.
“And a lot of it is getting to know the track so when I do come here next year it does not take me the whole of FP1 to get up to speed.
“[But] as much as it is preparation for me next year, my job still is to drive well, not make mistakes, give good feedback to the engineers, improving the car for the weekend and for next year especially.
“So I am doing all I can to make sure I am not just enjoying it but treating it like it is my only session for prepare for qualifying.
“It is making sure every lap counts and not doing anything stupid.”
Norris added that confirmation of his 2019 race seat means he is not trying to prove anything during his Formula 1 runs.
“I have proved myself enough already,” he said.
“I have signed for next year so there is not as much pressure so show I am nailing everything everywhere.
“I am a bit more relaxed now, which is a good thing.”
Norris holds third position in the Formula 2 Championship and is now out of contention for the title after his failure to score a point at the penultimate round in Russia.
Mercedes-backed George Russell is poised to win clinch the crown in Abu Dhabi next month and will head to the finale 37 points clear of Alexander Albon.