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World Champion predicts surprise British GP podium

Mika Hakkinen suggests the team that may be in line for their first top-three finish of 2023 at Silverstone.

Two-time F1 World Champion Mika Hakkinen has backed Lando Norris to score a podium finish at this weekend’s British Grand Prix. McLaren had a torrid start to 2023 with their draggy MCL60, but recent upgrades have helped the team move up the order, with Norris scoring a season's best fourth place last time out in Austria, finishing ahead of both Mercedes and Aston Martins in the process. With McLaren seemingly having found some form, Hakkinen – who won the 1998 and 1999 world titles driving for the Woking outfit – is backing the team to go one better on home soil at Silverstone this weekend. "Silverstone is quick and flowing, and suits cars which have good power, grip and aerodynamic efficiency, making it an ideal opportunity for Max Verstappen to continue on his winning ways," Hakkinen told Unibet . "What will be interesting is to see how the close battle behind Red Bull works out. "Three teams are podium hopefuls – Aston Martin, Mercedes and Ferrari – but I will throw in an outside bet. "Lando Norris, fresh from a strong 4th in Austria, will be pushing to go even better in the upgraded McLaren, and team mate Oscar Piastri will be aiming to join him. "The fight between the teams is so close. In Austria last weekend, all 20 cars were covered by just 0.858 seconds in the first part of qualifying. "This means that any upgrade which works can really benefit you, and with McLaren making a good step, Norris is really hoping for a big result at home in Silverstone."

Hakkinen backs Perez to come good

Hakkinen alsobacked Sergio Perez to return to form at Silverstone, after the Mexican enduredthree tough weekends in Monaco, Spain and Canada where he failed to finish onthe podium as teammate Max Verstappen cantered to victory each time. "SergioPerez had a better weekend in Austria, making Red Bull the first team to scorea 1-2 in a Sprint Race, while he was also on the podium in the Grand Prixdespite having to recover from being knocked out in Q2 as a result of exceedingtrack limits," said Hakkinen. "Hefeels much happier after a strong weekend and I expect him and Max to be verystrong at Silverstone."

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