On Thursday in Sochi Norris admitted that it was the “most downbeat” second place he has ever earned, reflecting his own desire to log a win. Seidl understands the young Briton’s frustration.
“Lando wouldn’t be a racing driver if he would be happy with a P2,” he says. “So I think that’s normal, that he would have wished to win the race. But at the same time, I think with him being part of this journey since since day one in the last years, I think he enjoyed himself, also being part of this great day that we had even in P2.
“And in the end, he had a great weekend as well, he simply continued to pull off a great performance, again, similar to what he has done all year already. And I think that has given him, despite the small disappointment, maybe a lot of pleasure as well.”
Seidl says he made sure to remind Norris of the value of the contribution he’s made thus far in benchmarking the progress of the team.
“All I could do in the last week with Lando was simply thank him for everything that he was doing for us this entire season so far, because we shouldn’t forget, especially with the struggles Daniel had in this first half of the season, it was very important that we had a Lando that was pulling off these performances.
“Because we all know how the sport works. If Lando would have struggled this way as well, in the same way as Daniel did at some weekends, the roof at the MTC would have been on fire quite quickly! And we would have questioned everything we are doing. That’s part of the sport we’re in.
“And so with the performances Lando has shown, that’s why I can’t thank him enough. It allowed us to simply keep working quietly on our plan of getting back to the front in F1. And I think he appreciates that as well, and understands that, and his time will come, there will be more opportunities coming in his career.”
The Monza result came with perfect timing for Ricciardo. The Australian has been struggling to find the limits of the car all season, with a particular issue under braking.
Given his team-mate’s impressive performances it’s been confidence-sapping even for a guy with multiple grands prix wins on his CV. He’s felt more comfortable over the last few races, and the win provided a further boost to his morale.
“It was important to him that after he was feeling a lot better in the car since he came back from the summer break that actually this was also visible in terms of results,” says Seidl. “And therefore I was very happy with what he could pull off in Monza, it was great for him to win the race, and simply looking forward now with this additional boost that this definitely gives to him as well, that there’s even more to come from his side.
“I think we are in very good position with our two drivers, because we have definitely one of the strongest line-ups here in the paddock which is key in our battle that we are now in with Ferrari, and key in our journey getting back to the front in F1 in the next years.”