Max Verstappen Lando Norris
Max Verstappen Lando Norris Source: The SportsRush

Lando Norris and Carlos Sainz have been the next best drivers this season after Max Verstappen. The Ferrari driver won the Australian Grand Prix, where the Dutch racer had a shocking DNF due to a brake issue. On the other hand, the McLaren racer has impressed a lot of people since last year. They did not have a great pace in the first half of 2023. However, they made things difficult for the Prancing Horse as well as Mercedes in the second half of last season. It was really impressive to see the incredible pace they gained and the points they scored. McLaren was the second-fastest car behind Red Bull in the latter half of last year. 

But in 2024, Ferrari seemed pretty strong. Albeit it is still the Austrian outfit on top of the standings, and Max Verstappen has won four races already, the Italian manufacturers are showing a lot of promise. Moreover, there is still a long way to go in this ongoing season, with 19 GPs still remaining. Things can get a bit interesting if Red Bull makes any mistakes, such as maintaining tire pressure. In the meantime, the drivers that have been impressive besides the reigning champion are Lando and Carlos. Lately, the son of the great Niki Lauda, Mathias Lauda, said Lando is the best option to be Verstappen’s teammate.


Why Mathias Chose Lando Norris Over Carlos Sainz Jr.?

Lando Norris Max Verstappen
Lando Norris Max Verstappen Source: PlanetF1

On Saturday, Lando Norris secured a pole position for the sprint race. But then he fell back in the first sprint race of the 2024 season. Later, the McLaren driver finished at P2 on the final race day in Shanghai. He did not let the Red Bull drivers enjoy another one-two finish this season. Perhaps Verstappen and Sergio Perez might have more opportunities for one-two finishes, but Norris was really impressive in the Chinese Grand Prix. According to, Mathias Lauda mentioned Lando Norris did a great job in Shanghai as Sergio Perez could never really come close to him. The son of the great three-time champion, Niki Lauda, added that Checo can only finish at P2 if everything goes in his favor. 

There is a difference between Checo and Max, as Lauda feels the Dutch racer can drive forward on his own. However, Lauda said Perez can’t do that. But if there is a driver after Max Verstappen who he thinks is one of the best in F1, then that’s Lando Norris. Hence, he believes Norris is a far better option for Verstappen’s new teammate. Lauda said Norris is constantly proving his worth at McLaren. However, Mathias feels no top racer wants a teammate who can irritate him. That’s why Max is so comfortable with Checo. But Norris can create problems for Verstappen. 

Who Are Other Options For Max Verstappen’s New Teammate?

Carlos Sainz Jr. Ferrari Max Verstappen Red Bull
Carlos Sainz Jr. Ferrari Max Verstappen Red Bull Source: FirstSportz

Red Bull advisor Helmut Marko said they have been talking to Carlos Sainz Jr., But the 80-year-old advisor also pointed out the offer the Spaniard has from Audi. Marko said Red Bull couldn’t match that offer. Anyhow, after the current form of Sergio Perez, he is still in the pole position of extending his contract at the Milton Keynes outfit. But then, to look around, Red Bull can find Yuki Tsunoda as a viable option for Checo’s replacement.

But Lando Norris is doing really well. Currently, he has the unwanted record of most podium finishes without a GP win. Lately, Max Verstappen mocked the British racers while playing EA FC with his buddies. When he heard the British National Anthem, the triple-time reigning champion mentioned, “Have not really heard that in a while.”

Stay tuned to Sports News International for more such updates about your favorite F1 team.