F1 2024 Australian Grand Prix, McLaren driver Oscar Piastri told to move aside for teammate Lando Norris, video, latest news

McLaren’s orders to Oscar Piastri “went down like a cold flat white” after the young Aussie star was told to move aside for teammate Lando Norris at Albert Park.

Piastri, 22, was running third through 29 laps in the Australian F1 Grand Prix when he was ordered to let teammate Norris through.

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It was a kick in the stomach for a massive contingent of the home crowd decked out in orange to support the Australian driver.

“Piastri is now being told to swap positions and to move aside and let your teammate through and that’s exactly what he’s done,” commentator David Croft said.

“That must feel especially horrible in your home race.

“But as we’ve often seen with Oscar Piastri, the team asks you to do something, he does it, he doesn’t complain, he’ll have a debrief later.”

Fellow commentator Martin Brundle, always the straight shooter, replied that that’s life sometimes in motorsport.

Oscar Piastri asked to move aside for his teammate. Photo: Fox Sports
Oscar Piastri asked to move aside for his teammate. Photo: Fox SportsSource: FOX SPORTS

“What goes around comes around and they probably need to release Norris a little bit,” Brundle said.

“In a way he’s on a different strategy isn’t he, (Norris) pitted lap 14, Piastri lap 9, so they want to try to use the freshness of that tyre.

“Norris they think is a touch quicker as well and can keep the pressure on Ferrari. That’s so important for them now.”

Pit expert Ted Kravitz summed up how the news was received by the huge crowd.

“I have to tell you Crofty that went down like a cold flat white with the crowd, that position swap,” he said.

Piastri did the team thing but can’t have been thrilled. Photos: News Corp/Fox SportsSource: FOX SPORTS

“I think they understand it’s for the good of the McLaren team … knowing Lando is probably better placed with younger tyres.

“But we’ll see how much damage Lando has already done to his tyres in Piastri’s dirty air to see whether he can close on Leclerc or the Ferrari has too much pace.”

“I doubt there’s a box to tick on (McLaren’s) to-do list today of pleasing the fans,” Brundle added.

Carlos Sainz went on to win the race for Ferrari ahead of teammate Charles Leclerc, with Norris taking the third place on the podium.

Piastri came in fourth in an excellent result for him and his team, but it was oh so close to the victory dais for the Victorian.

Piastri remained upbeat after the race, saying: “I think a good result. Of course I would have loved to have been one spot up, but I’m pretty happy with that.

“I think I just struggled a little bit on that middle stint on the hard (tyre). But all in all I’m pretty happy with the race. Good load of points for the whole team.

“I think definitely we were a bit quicker than we expected. When we could hang with the Ferraris, that was a positive surprise.”

He also completely understood the decision, showing maturity beyond his years.

“For me it was completely fair,” Piastri said.

“He (Norris) qualified in front of me yesterday, went a bit longer on the first stop and he was catching me and quicker at that point of the race.

“At that point I was keeping with (Charles) Leclerc and Lando was catching both of us. I was honestly hoping that he would pass me and go and get Charles.

“But for me that was completely fair. Of course, at home, I would have loved to have been able to stay in third, but for me that was completely fair.

“I think with the different strategies we had and the tyre difference in terms of stop lap, I was expecting Lando to be quicker at that point and he was.”

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