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Hamilton 'love' for McLaren still strong - Norris

The McLaren driver has discussed his relationship with Lewis Hamilton and how it has helped him during a tough start to the season.

Lando Norris has insisted Mercedes driver Lewis Hamilton has retained his "love" for McLaren. The Woking-based outfit launched a new livery for the British Grand Prix, which is a throwback to its title-winning years with Hamilton in 2007 and 2008. Norris played golf with Hamilton following the Saudi Arabian Grand Prix and has been leaning on the seven-time F1 World Champion for advice following his tough start to the season. Speaking to select media, including RacingNews365.com , Norris revealed his relationship with Hamilton was "growing". "Over the last couple of months, we have been chatting a bit more and getting to know each other a bit more," said Norris. "It is a pretty cool thing, I have so much respect for him and what he has been able to achieve in F1 and a huge amount of respect for him now. "I am not always the kind of guy who asks a lot of questions to these kinds of people to get to know what they are like and know what they think, it is more in a subtle way to try and understand how they think and their thought processes and understand what makes them special. "I am not always the most proactive in going forward and picking people's brains, which I guess is maybe a better way of doing it, but it is not who I am. "I am happy to spend time with these people, people who top off whatever sport they are in and I have a lot of respect for."

Norris: Weird to think I'm racing against Hamilton

The pair were in a close battle for fifth during the Austrian Grand Prix, with Norris reporting that Hamilton was exceeding track limits on more than one occasion. The stewards eventually issued Hamilton with a time penalty for multiple violations, which enabled Norris to emerge ahead after their pit stops. Both drivers were engaged in battle during the 2021 Russian Grand Prix, where the McLaren driver came close to his first race victory before it was thwarted by a sudden downpour of rain in the closing stages, allowing Hamilton to secure the win. Explaining his admiration for Hamilton, Norris added: "He's part of the reason why I am an F1 driver, the reason I wanted to become an F1 driver. "It is weird thinking right now that I am racing against him - I raced against him quite a bit last weekend. It is very cool, an honour, to be able to do it at the same time. "But this is a relationship that is changing and growing, I guess because of where he is in his career and things like that. "He still has a lot of respect and love for McLaren, he still wants us to do well and that is a nice thing because this is where he started his career and wherever you start your career, you kind of owe them something in a way."

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