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Lando Norris

Norris on FIA concerns: 'You never want that to happen'

All the talk is about off-track activities ahead of the second race weekend of the season.

Norris McLaren Saudi Arabia 2024
To news overview © XPBimages

Lando Norris has bemoaned the off-track "noise" that has dominated a turbulent start to the new F1 season.

Red Bull team principal Christian Horner has been caught in a saga surrounding allegations of inappropriate behaviour that has led to tensions seemingly spilling over within the team, though the Briton did have the case dismissed by Red Bull GmbH following an internal investigation.

Whilst that situation continues to simmer, FIA president Mohammed Ben Sulayem has been the subject of two claims from a whistleblower regarding separate issues last season.

Addressing the off-track controversies ahead of the Saudi Arabian Grand Prix, Norris told media including RacingNews365: "Thankfully I am not in any of it so I am ok.

"There is noise, definitely not what we should have as a sport, it should only be about racing and what drivers do between one another when on-track.

"I don't think the sport should be interrupted by what has happened away from the circuit, that's got nothing to do with racing.

"That can be a headline somewhere else but it shouldn't impact what the chatter is, I shouldn't be getting asked about what happens in people's private lives, that has nothing to do with me.

"So I try to stay out of it as much as possible, it's not the reason why I'm here, so I guess it distracts you, people want headlines but it has got nothing to do with F1, nothing to do with McLaren and myself, which is also a good thing because it allows us to focus on what we want to do.

"But as a sport, it shouldn't be that it happens."

'As long as that gets resolved'

The claims regarding Ben Sulayem have raised considerable concern given the nature of the accusations.

Most alarmingly, it has been claimed the FIA president requested a penalty for Aston Martin's Fernando Alonso to be overturned at last year's race at the Jeddah Corniche Circuit, with F1's governing body currently investigating the matter.

Put to Norris that this issue was of concern given it related to on-track activity, the McLaren driver replied: "That's a bigger topic.

"Again, it is nothing that directly involves me and I am sure the investigation is going on and I don't know everything about it.

"If it does come up and the drivers are more involved, then absolutely... but it wasn't something we knew about either, I don't know all the facts so it's nothing I can speak about.

"But you never want that sort of thing to happen at any point, because of preference or whatever it is from any side.

"As long as that gets resolved, then all is good."

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RESULTS 2024 F1 Chinese Grand Prix