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Norris rues mistake at end of Q3 as he vows to ‘bring the fight’ to Mercedes at Silverstone

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NORTHAMPTON, ENGLAND - JULY 06: Lando Norris of McLaren and Great Britain  during practice ahead of

Lando Norris was disappointed to miss out on the final pole position shootout in qualifying for the British Grand Prix, with the McLaren driver ending the session in P3 after a “little mistake” forced him to abort his last flying lap.

Norris had displayed good pace throughout the hour at Silverstone, having put himself into the top three in Q1 before going fastest of all in Q2. His form continued to look promising as Q3 got underway, with his lap during the opening runs being a mere six thousandths of a second away from Russell’s provisional pole time.

READ MORE: Russell beats Hamilton to pole at Silverstone as Norris completes all-British top three

While Russell improved even further during the final flying laps, Norris returned to the pits rather than crossing the line, meaning that he did not set another time. This put him in a final position of third behind the Mercedes cars of Russell and Lewis Hamilton on the front row.

When it was put to him after the session that he had looked to be laying down the lap times, Norris responded: “I was until the end. I’m happy with P3. Three Brits lock out the top three, so pretty cool here.

“Good laps by George and Lewis, both. They did an excellent job, they put in some nice laps. A little mistake on my part at the end, but P3 is still good.”

NORTHAMPTON, ENGLAND - JULY 06: Lando Norris of Great Britain driving the (4) McLaren MCL38

Norris aborted his final run in Q3, leaving him to start in third on the grid

Norris made a memorable start to the British Grand Prix back in 2023, having surged into the lead on the opening lap of the event. With this in mind, the 24-year-old acknowledged that it was still “100%” all to play for on Sunday this time around, particularly given the mixed weather forecast.

“It’s meant to rain again tomorrow, so I’m excited,” he added. “It’s going to be a good race. We’re quick… I can bring the fight to George and I can bring the fight to Lewis, so I’m excited to put on a good show tomorrow.

HIGHLIGHTS: Watch the thrilling action from qualifying at Silverstone as Russell beats Hamilton to home pole

“I’m excited. I hope we’re going to have some good battles so I look forward to it.”

Fellow McLaren driver Oscar Piastri will line up in fifth place for the race and, like his team mate, had looked fast during the qualifying hour. However, the Australian felt that his final effort was affected by getting stuck in traffic.

“I felt pretty good through the whole session,” he explained afterwards. “I think the car was performing well, I felt pretty comfortable with it and, yeah, just got it wrong in the last lap with traffic and leaving the pits.

NORTHAMPTON, ENGLAND - JULY 06: Oscar Piastri of Australia and McLaren prepares to drive in the

Piastri is hoping to still be in the fight for a podium on Sunday at Silverstone

“My last lap wasn’t really a lap. Yeah, a shame, but could be an interesting race tomorrow with all the weather around. We can still score some big points tomorrow.”

Piastri will start just behind Max Verstappen in fourth, whose Red Bull looked to have been hampered by an earlier trip through the gravel at Copse.

READ MORE: Russell ‘absolutely buzzing’ with home pole as Hamilton hopes Mercedes pair can ‘work together’ to beat Norris

Pushed on whether the performance and pace of the MCL38 during the session had given him confidence that he could fight for a podium on Sunday, Piastri acknowledged the threat posed by McLaren’s rivals as he responded: “Yes but I think Mercedes look very quick – obviously, [they] just had a one-two, so their car can’t be too bad!

“And I think Max as well, I don’t know if he had any damage from when he went off, but I would assume yes, unless his car’s a tank!

“So I think there will be quick cars around us, definitely, but we’re in a good position. I think we can definitely take advantage of whatever opportunities come.”

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