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Lando Norris’ Maiden F1 Victory: A Watershed Moment Heralded by Damon Hill

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Damon Hill regards Lando Norris' initial Formula 1 victory as a pivotal turning point.

1996 world champion Damon Hill is of the opinion that Lando Norris achieving his first win in F1 could serve as a pivotal turning point in his career.

The McLaren racer achieved his first-ever grand prix win on his 110th try, finishing ahead of Red Bull's Max Verstappen to secure victory in Miami during their last race.

This achievement concluded his unfortunate streak of securing the most top-three finishes in Formula 1 without claiming victory. It also dispelled the doubts cast on his ability to perform under pressure, doubts that arose following his close call at the 2021 Russian Grand Prix, where he was criticized for failing to secure a win in critical moments.

"Hill mentioned on the F1 Nation podcast that he had come across opinions labeling him as someone who buckles under pressure. However, he personally never viewed Lando through that lens."

"In my view, he had fulfilled all the prerequisites expected from someone who aspires to be a grand prix victor and a potential world champion. This includes having gone through rigorous challenges and earning his stripes."

I happened to be in Russia during the time he almost clinched victory but unfortunately faced setbacks in the last laps. Personally, I recall the numerous occasions I was on the brink of success before it actually materialized. Such is the essence of this sport. You inch towards the goal, only to be hindered by obstacles, leading you to question if your moment will ever come.

You dismiss that idea, understanding that perseverance and continuous effort will inevitably lead to opportunity presenting itself, and when it does, everything will fall into place almost instantly.

"Indeed, that was my experience when my victories began to increase, and I believe Lando has the potential to follow suit."

When questioned about the effects of a delayed first victory on a driver's mental state, Hill responded, "I believe it's less about your own mental condition; it's simply frustrating.

"Each of these drivers believes that with the perfect set of conditions, they have what it takes to secure a grand prix victory. A few have even been fortunate enough to achieve this multiple times, leaving no question about their capability to win."

Currently, you've simply confirmed your own beliefs. Lando essentially expressed that he was always aware of his capabilities; the real problem lies in others' impatience and their lack of trust and belief in his convictions.

"Thus, achieving victory can also lead to unsettling others since it sets you apart from them. It places you ahead in the journey of success, and he has now experienced this."

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