The Briton has got off to a good start to the 2021 Formula 1 season and is currently fourth in the drivers’ standings after stepping onto the podium at the Emilia-Romagna Grand Prix.
However, his qualifying sessions did not go ideally, as he was often unable to match his best Q2 time in the final round of Q3 which secures the grid spots.
In three of the four Grands Prix so far this season, Norris’ fastest lap has come in Q2.
But while lap times suggest that a pattern could emerge, Norris is clear that a mixture of circumstances and events beyond his control have skewed the picture.
“I don’t think my qualifying was too bad,” Norris said, when McLaren’s new Gulf livery was unveiled for the Monaco Grand Prix.
“The Q1 and Q2 were very good, and the first run of Q3 was often very good. But then the second run of Q3 is often a bit downhill, but all for different reasons.
“It’s not because I failed to do laps or assemble or something. In Spain I had some damage to the car. In Imola it was to get out of the The track Portugal started too early and got caught behind the Aston Martin.
“So all of them were a little different. I’m not too worried about it.
“If this was something that became consistent and started to repeat itself in the third trimester, then I would think there is one clear thing to work on. But at the moment, it’s still a different reason.
“And Q1 and Q2 have always gone really well. So I still have the confidence to put them together in Q3.”
Norris said the Spanish GP issue that held him back on his last attempt in Q3 was the result of damage to the ground he suffered in his first race with old tires.
“I ran wide between turns 8 and 9 on the first run which was unfortunately on a relatively new tire. Then on the new tire the damage cost me a bit so it wasn’t ideal. “