F1: Norris reveals state of mind in epic final lap battle with Verstappen at Emilia-Romagna Grand Prix


Lando Norris revealed he was “praying” for one more lap in a bid to beat Max Verstappen to victory at the Formula 1 Emilia Romagna Grand Prix on Sunday.

Norris was 7.5 seconds behind Verstappen with 20 laps to go but began to reduce the deficit as he found better performance in his hard tyres than the reigning F1 world champion.

The Miami Grand Prix winner however never got within the required range to overtake Verstappen on the final lap and had to settle for second in his McLaren, finishing 0.725 seconds behind the Red Bull driver.

“I was praying for one more lap! I did everything I could,” Norris told Sky Sports F1.

“I was pushing like hell to catch up to get there and have a chance. As soon as you get within two seconds you lose downforce and grip, the tyres start to overheat.

“I struggled for a couple laps, but once I understood how I had to drive again, I managed to get there on the last lap.

“Seven tenths, one more lap and at least he would have to defend into Turn One and maybe something could have come from that. But one lap too late. It’s a shame, but it is what it is. And we just struggled too much in the beginning of the race.”

The second place finish was the third straight podium finish for Norris this season and the 17th of his F1 career which has taken him up to fourth in the drivers’ championship, 50 points behind current leader Verstappen.

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