McLaren podium bet is back: After Daniel Ricciardo's tattoo win, Zak Brown offers newcomer Oscar Piastri the chance
McLaren CEO Zak Brown claims he will get yet another tattoo if 2023 rookie Oscar Piastri shows up on the podium later this year. The American got a tattoo in honor of Daniel Ricciardo's Monza win in 2021 and claims he will do the same should Piastri makes the podium this year.
Brown reportedly made a tattoo bet with Ricciardo in 2021 when the driver raced for the Woking-based team. The CEO got a tattoo of the infamous circuit in Italy, with the date of Daniel Ricciardo's win mentioned above it.
The Australian's win marked the team's first win under Brown, making it a special occasion for the American businessman. However, it seems McLaren hotshot Lando Norris failed to get in on a similar bet for himself as Zak Brown has no tattoos to honor the Briton's contribution to the team.
Norris was the only driver outside the top three teams to feature on the podium in 2022, showcasing his stellar driving skills.
With Oscar Piastri absolutely crushing the opposition in the junior racing categories, the Australian is pipped to be the sport's next big thing. However, many promising drivers such as Mick Schumacher have made it to F1 and cracked under pressure.
McLaren's Lando Norris could fight for wins in 2023, claims F1 analyst
Lando Norris could be fighting for his maiden race win in 2023 if McLaren can keep up with the best teams, claims former driver-turned-analyst Jolyon Palmer.
The 23-year-old Briton had a splendid 2022 season — finishing seventh in the drivers' standings — with his ability to compete any higher up the grid limited only by his car.
In his most recent post-season column on F1's official website, Palmer praised Lando Norris for 'another stellar season', writing:
"It was another stellar season for the McLaren driver, who barely put a foot wrong all campaign to finish comfortably best of the rest in the standings and almost single-handedly take the fight to Alpine in the Constructors’ Championship.”
Palmer hopes that the gap between the best teams and others will reduce next season, and expects that will help the McLaren driver have a realistic shot at his first win. He wrote:
“The gap between the best and the rest was bigger than anticipated in 2022, something I hope will close up from next season to give more of the midfielders opportunities. But it was only Norris who managed a podium outside of the top three teams, with his drive to third in Imola."
Lando Norris came agonizingly close to winning a race in 2021 when a late rain shower in Sochi denied him a richly-deserved victory. The McLaren driver, however, is widely considered a special talent, and in the right car, he could have already won a race or even challenged for titles.