Lando Norris admits that McLaren's strong reliability may have given them the edge in their Constructors' Championship battle with Alpine.
With the two teams continuing to vie for P4 in the standings, Norris and teammate Daniel Ricciardo brought home a double points finish for the Woking-based squad at the Mexican Grand Prix.
While Esteban Ocon finished P8 for Alpine, Fernando Alonso was forced to retire due to a mechanical issue. As such, McLaren have closed the gap to their rivals, with the deficit now at seven points.
Norris is pleased with his team for managing to perform well in a range of areas, though acknowledges that the fight with Alpine could be challenging in the final two races of the 2022 F1 season.
Norris praises McLaren for reliability
"Not everything in Formula 1 is about performance," Norris told media, including RacingNews365.com.
"And even when we lacked a little bit, I think we do a very good job in every other area, which is the reliability, which is one of the biggest [areas].
"It makes me happier that we're closing the gap, but we're working hard, so I feel like we deserve to be getting what we're getting, at the end of the day.
"But it means we still have to work extremely hard to beat them over the next two races.
"We'll enjoy a couple days off, then I'm in the factory all week, so I'll make sure we're prepared for the next few races."
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Can McLaren beat Alpine in Brazil?
The next race on the calendar is the Brazilian Grand Prix, where the third and final Sprint race of 2022 will take place.
Norris is not feeling overly optimistic about the team's pace at the Autodromo Jose Carlos Pace, but remains hopeful that they might continue to perform well in other areas.
"I don't know how we're going to do, to be honest with you," the Briton explained.
"I wouldn't say Brazil is going to suit us at all with the balance of the car and so on, and our struggles.
"But I think, in the last few races, we've not been the quickest car or [been] quick enough, but we've just done a better job with the strategy and with reliability, such as [in Mexico], so let's get to the chequered flag."
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