Lewis Hamilton and Max Verstappen react as Lando Norris wins first F1 race

Lando Norris celebrates winning the F1 Miami Grand Prix (Picture: Getty)

Lewis Hamilton and Max Verstappen have offered their congratulations to Lando Norris after he claimed his maiden Formula 1 victory at the Miami Grand Prix.

The 24-year-old Brit, driving for McClaren, took advantage of a safety car to jump to the front of the pack with 27 laps to go and kept Red Bull champion Verstappen at bay to win his first race.

Ferrari’s Charles Leclerc finished third ahead of team-mate Carlos Sainz, who was then penalised back into fifth for colliding with Norris’ McClaren team-mate Oscar Piastri.

‘About time, huh?’ Norris said after finally securing victory in his 110th grand prix.

‘The whole weekend has been good. I’ve had a few setbacks along the way. I knew on Friday we had the pace and just a couple of mistakes here and there but today we managed to put it together, we put the perfect strategy, it all paid off.’

The most successful British driver of all time, Hamilton, and F1 superstar Verstappen were quick to praise Norris after he ended his wait for a race win.

‘I’m really happy for Lando,’ seven-time world champion Hamilton told Sky Sports. ‘It’s such a special moment to win your first Grand Prix.

‘I started at McLaren and I’m really happy to see them back at the top. It’s been a long time.’

Asked what he told Norris after the race, Hamilton added: ‘I just told him he needs to stay [in Miami] tonight. He’s going to try and change his flight. He’s got to! He just won a race.’

Verstappen, meanwhile, said: ‘If I get beaten, it’s great that it has been done by Lando. He deserves it. It’s been a long time coming and it’s going to be the first of many.

‘Maybe it’s also a bit of relief for him that he has that win now, who knows what’s going to happen next?

‘But for sure they had a strong weekend. Maybe it was a little bit messy still [on Saturday] but today they were flying – and especially Lando was flying. So definitely very happy for him.’

Norris, who grew up in Bristol and made his F1 debut in 2019, appears to be a popular figure in the Formula 1 yard with fellow Brit George Russell and Leclerc also congratulating him after the Miami GP.

Russell, who finished eighth for Mercedes, said: ‘Obviously happy to see Lando finally get a victory. It seemed well deserved. He has done an amazing job for a long time.’

Leclerc added: ‘I’m really happy for Lando. As much as we all want to beat each other and to come out on top, it’s always emotional to see so many emotions on one of your competitors.

‘We have all grown up together. Max and myself were on the same category but you always keep an eye on the younger categories.

‘I remember looking at Lando, when we all had the same dream of being a Formula 1 driver one day.

‘Then once you achieve that you obviously want the first win. I remember my first win and it is a very, very special moment.’

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