“Makes Others Look Bad”: War of Words Gets Personal as Lando Norris Hits Back at Fernando Alonso

Published 10/07/2023, 8:29 AM EDT

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As the 2023 Formula 1 season roars into its second half, one name has been making waves on the track, Lando Norris. With McLaren, Norris has been on a remarkable journey of resurgence with consistent top-10 finishes. Thanks to that, McLaren has slowly been closing in on Fernando Alonso’s Aston Martin in the constructors’ championship. But the driver recently found himself entangled in a verbal exchange with the veteran, Fernando Alonso. In typical fashion, Alonso quickly stirred controversy with his suggestion. He shared that McLaren is overly confident in their chances of catching Aston Martin in the 2023 constructors’ championship.

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The battle between Aston Martin and McLaren for the fourth spot at the constructors’ championship has been intense. But in typical F1 fashion, so is the drama. What started as a debate over McLaren’s confidence has quickly escalated into a somewhat personal battle of words.

Lando Norris Fires Back: The Verbal Sparring Intensifies

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Often considered the ‘antagonist’ of modern F1, Fernando Alonso is no stranger to Formula 1’s rivalries and politics. During the pre-event press conference for the Qatar Grand Prix, he shared his thoughts on McLaren’s performance. Alonso acknowledged McLaren’s recent momentum. He believed that the battle between McLaren, Aston Martin, Ferrari, and Mercedes would see ups and downs. Moreover, he wasn’t shy from hinting at his former team, McLaren.

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He stated, “So, it’s good if they are overconfident. Let’s see if we can beat them in Abu Dhabi.” Following the press conference, Autosport promptly approached Lando Norris with Alonso’s remarks. To this, Norris responded confidently, highlighting McLaren’s recent points acquisition.

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“He says that we’re getting too confident? How many points did we catch [back up] last weekend? Quite a few,” the British driver retorted.

To keep things interesting, Norris landed a playful jab at the two-time world champion. The McLaren driver added, “So, unless his math is deteriorating, which it definitely isn’t… Fernando is just Fernando – he’s always going to say things. He always makes himself look very good or makes other people look bad. He’s very good at that.”

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With such verbal exchanges, the remaining races left in F1 certainly promise loads of drama and entertainment. As Formula 1 has always been about more than just racing, this war of words is adding extra spice to the competition. Moreover, this possible rivalry between Norris and Alonso and their respective teams only adds more to it.

Inside the McLaren vs. Aston Martin Duel

While the interesting verbal sparring continues, it’s crucial that F1 fans keep an eye on the broader picture. The fight between McLaren vs. Aston Martin, for fourth place in the constructors’ championship. Both teams and their drivers are determined to outperform each other in the remaining races of the 2023 season.

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It’s no secret that McLaren has improved their development over the course of the current season. On the other hand, Aston Martin failed to maintain their advantage over teams like Ferrari, McLaren, and Mercedes. As aforementioned teams slowly but steadily caught up to them, and are looking comparatively faster. Because of these developments, Formula 1 fans are in for some thrilling races ahead.

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However, it’s crucial to grasp the context and motivations behind the comments made by both Norris and Alonso. Going beyond these verbal exchanges allows us to gain a deeper understanding of their perspectives. Potential rivalries like these are somewhat common in Formula 1. Additionally, Fernando Alonso is no stranger to playing mind games with his opponents. There’s a reason he’s everyone’s favorite ‘villain’.

While the rivalry between Alonso and Norris may be an effort by the veteran driver to get into his opponent’s head, it appears that the in-form McLaren driver remains composed. Norris seems well aware of Alonso’s tactics as he remains focused on his performance.

With the 2023 Qatar Grand Prix Spring Shootout only hours away, Norris vs Alonso is bound to be one of the key battles to watch. Their ‘burgeoning rivalry’, thanks to their war of words, add an intriguing layer of drama, heading into the Lusail International Circuit.

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WATCH THIS STORY | How Lando Norris Had a Chance to Go to Red Bull But Instead Chose McLaren

Who do you think will end up victorious? Can Fernando Alonso give Aston Martin more room to breathe? Or will the in-form Lando Norris give McLaren the upper hand over their rivals? Stay tuned to find out more.

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Written by:

Adhiraj Dhyani

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Adhiraj Dhyani is an F1 writer at EssentiallySports. He kick-started his online writing journey on Drivetribe, where he passionately covered F1 and automobile content. Following his automotive adventures, he explored the realm of eSports, specializing in the coverage of League of Legends.
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Edited by:

Akash Pandhare

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