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Andrea Stella

McLaren make 'at all costs' pledge to Norris and Piastri

Andrea Stella says he will not shy away from laying down the law with Lando Norris and Oscar Piastri, if he feels they stray beyond the parameters of accepting racing.

Stella
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McLaren team principal Andrea Stella insists he will not blindly support his drivers "at all costs" if he feels they have stepped over the line during wheel-to-wheel racing.

Driving standards have again become a topic of conversation in the fallout of Lando Norris and Max Verstappen's clash at the Austrian Grand Prix.

Whilst it has been a hot-button issue in the past, particularly surrounding the Red Bull driver and the on-track tactics he employs, the latest bout has spilled into the British Grand Prix weekend at Silverstone.

McLaren CEO Zak Brown recently contended that although his team was ready to go "toe-to-toe" with the Milton Keynes outfit, his squad would not adopt a "win-at-all-costs mentality" to beat them - a sentiment Stella supported in his remarks.

"We want to make sure that we race within the regulations and in a respectful way," the 53-year-old replied when asked by RacingNews365 for his thoughts on Brown's comments and whether he was instilling any principles or value in Norris and Oscar Piastri and how they race.

"It's always tough when you are on track, but I think it's pretty clear what you are supposed to do. 

"So, for us as a team, we want to make sure that this is applied by our drivers, and if we see that our drivers go outside this range - which is the correct range to be within - then we will definitely help our drivers understand that that was not right rather than back them up at all costs."

Stella stands by prior comments

After the clash between Norris and Verstappen at Spielberg, battle lines were quickly drawn between McLaren and Red Bull.

Stella did not hold back in his post-race remarks, likening the incident to some of racing seen throughout the 2021, during the bad-tempered and ultimately controversial title fight between Verstappen and Lewis Hamilton.

The Italian also hit back at Horner, questioning the Red Bull team principal's integrity for his stance on the collision.

However, he did not want to comment much further on Brown's aforementioned recent assertion, which came in the wake of the American expressing his "disappointment" in the Red Bull leadership.

"Zak [Brown] has already commented about the opposition, he has already commented about Red Bull," added Stella.

"For me, I already commented about Red Bull straight after the race [in Austria]. I said that we have so much respect for Red Bull, so much respect for Max [so] they don't need to do that [race in the manner in which they do]. That was my comments, my comments still stand."

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