McLaren reveals launch date after Norris ‘leak’

Formula 1

McLaren has confirmed it will launch its 2020 F1 car on Feb.13 after a video showing driver Lando Norris apparently revealing the date by mistake.

Norris was filming a handheld video around McLaren’s UK factory in Woking when he stumbled upon a meeting between the team’s marketing and communications teams. During the exchange he asked what they were working on and was told it was the launch.

Norris then replied: “Oh, that’s the 13th of Feb? It is, right? Zak [Brown, McLaren CEO] told me it’s the 13th”.

The marketing team are then heard talking amongst themselves before a sheepish looking Norris is told he needs to stop filming. The team published the video in full, suggesting it was a pre-planned stunt. Its confirmation tweet carried the crossed-out caption “You heard it here first”.

McLaren is the third team to confirm its launch date for the 2020 season. Ferrari’s is currently the earliest scheduled launch, on Feb. 11, while McLaren will unveil its car one day ahead of Toro Rosso’s official rebrand as Alpha Tauri, which will take place on Feb. 14.

McLaren will hope its 2020 car, to be piloted by Norris and Carlos Sainz, can build on the success of last year’s campaign which saw it finish as the best team in the midfield, a position which has become known as ‘best of the rest’ behind Mercedes, Ferrari and Red Bull.

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