Formula 1 managing director Ross Brawn feels that Lando Norris is fighting in positions that he should not be as the McLaren driver scored his third podium of the 2021 F1 season at the Red Bull Ring on Sunday.
Norris was just 0.048 seconds away from pole position as he took a maiden front row start and battled with Lewis Hamilton and Valtteri Bottas throughout the Austrian Grand Prix on his way to third place.
"He delivered a sensational qualifying performance and followed it up with a great race," Brawn wrote in his post-race column.
"There were some tough decisions regarding penalties in the race, one of which impacted Lando. No one, including the stewards, want to see penalties and I think they will be debated for a long time.
"But equally, we can’t have unregulated aggression on the track. It’s not what we want to see either. Finding that balance isn’t always easy. Max [Verstappen] was a machine again, but I think Lando was punching well above his weight."
Norris is part of a young crop of young drivers who are excelling in F1 and it's something that Brawn is particularly pleased about.
"He [Norris] was highly rated when he arrived in Formula 1 and is now consistently delivering on that expectation," said Brawn "The McLaren driver has been constantly evolving this year and seems to have made a major step. He’s an amazing talent.
"We are blessed with the drivers we have right now. We’ve got the reference - which is Lewis, and then we’ve got Max, Lando, George Russell], Carlos [Sainz], Charles [Leclerc].