Who Could Replace Sick Lando Norris at McLaren Over the Tricky Monaco GP?

Published 05/25/2022, 12:20 PM EDT
Formula One F1 – Belgian Grand Prix – Spa-Francorchamps, Spa, Belgium – August 26, 2021 McLaren’s Lando Norris in the FIA Press Conference FIA/Handout via REUTERS

The Spanish GP was not kind to McLaren and Lando Norris. With huge upgrades in place, the Woking-based outfit looked to bounce back after a disappointing start. However, on a sunny evening in Barcelona, the young Brit was unwell and after fighting his way through the field in the race, he was diagnosed with tonsillitis after the race.

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He finished eighth in the Spanish Grand Prix after a tough weekend. With Monaco GP around the corner, McLaren will hope to get Norris fit and firing. But if the 22-year-old is still unfit, they will have to look for replacements. And at such a short notice it may prove to be a tough task.

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With that in mind, there are several drivers who would love to get their hands on an F1 car. So, who are the replacements in line to replace Norris if he fails to recover?

Who could replace Lando Norris in McLaren for Monaco GP?

Every racing driver aspires to drive in the streets of Monaco. And it could prove to be a great opportunity for any driver. McLaren team principal Andreas Seidl revealed the team also has an emergency plan in case the Briton still feels unwell.

May 6, 2022; Miami Gardens, Florida, USA; McLaren driver Lando Norris of Britain talks with a reporter during an interview during preparations for the Miami Grand Prix at Miami International Autodrome. Mandatory Credit: John David Mercer-USA TODAY Sports

“But as you know, we have different options in terms of reserve drivers prepared which we would pull in case of an emergency,” he said.

They have a pool of drivers who they can upon, including Mercedes reserve drivers Stoffel Vandoorne or Nyck de Vries. The British team also has an agreement with Alpine for Oscar Piastri. All these drivers are relatively inexperienced for the big stage.

However, they also have a choice to use former F1 driver Paul di Resta. The 35-year-old has been a part of Force India and has over 50 Grand Prix starts. His experience could prove valuable in Monaco.

Availability could prove to be a barrier to McLaren

Although McLaren has got plenty of options to choose from, the short time and availability could prove to be a hindrance for Seidl and Co.

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Speaking on the topic, the German said, “In terms of the reserve driver, that is something we would work out on short notice, which of the options we would pull. It depends also on the availability. Not all of the guys are always available because of other commitments for other racing series.”

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The former F2 champion is currently racing in Formula E while Oscar Piastri, Alpine’s reserve drive, could also prove to be an option. However, McLaren will be mindful, as he is part of a direct rival. But of course, one of these four will get an opportunity only if Lando Norris is unfit to race.

Although we all are hoping for Lando’s speedy recovery, who would you like to see among the 4 aforementioned drivers to take on the Monaco circuit in the MCL36? Leave your thoughts in the comments.

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Rahul Madhavan

436 articles

Rahul Madhavan is a Formula 1 writer at EssentiallySports. After completing his Bachelor's degree in business administration, he is pursuing his love for sports in the form of writing. Rahul is an avid McLaren fan, who also enjoys writing about soccer.

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