McLaren’s Lando Norris is enjoying an antisocial life in isolation as his “worst nightmare” is interacting with large groups of people or strangers.
The laid-back Norris quickly become one of F1’s most popular drivers in 2019, a campaign which saw him named rookie of the year. The introverted 20-year-old is relishing his time in lockdown away from the usual attention he would receive as an F1 driver.
Speaking on the In the Pink podcast, Norris said: “Obviously I have laughs and stuff.
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“It does come across that way on TV, not because it’s not something I am because when it’s me and Carlos [Sainz, his McLaren teammate] joking about and having laughs, that I love doing as well.
“But then I hate the crowds — not the [F1] crowds, I love the fans and everything of course – but I hate big groups of people. My worst nightmare is dinners and having to sit next to someone and getting forced to speak to them. I really don’t want to speak to anyone. That’s what I just don’t like.
“But everyone’s different, some people love being social whereas I just love being antisocial. It’s my jam.”
Norris has admitted he needs to take a more serious approach to racing for his sophomore season. The Englishman is prominent on social media and streaming service Twitch, where he has set record-breaking esports numbers during the coronavirus pandemic.
Lando Norris is an avid sim racer when not competing in Formula One. George Mattock/Getty Images
He says those activities suit his personality perfectly.
“I just enjoy spending time alone and doing things that I love to do. So if I was at home, say, I would still spend the whole day in my room painting or designing or something like that.
“It’s not the fact that I’m away from everyone else, it’s the fact of just being alone and listening to my music and doing things I enjoy whether it’s designing or playing on my simulator or chatting with my friends or something.
“As long as I still get to do the things that I love to do and like to do then I’m happy so it doesn’t really matter where I am in the world. If I still get to do those things, then I’m still happy with what’s going on.”
McLaren has already confirmed Norris will remain with the team in 2021, where he will partner new signing Daniel Ricciardo, who is replacing Ferrari-bound Carlos Sainz.