McLaren team boss wants to protect Piastri in Melbourne: ‘Some things we have to refuse’

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McLaren team boss wants to protect Piastri in Melbourne: 'Some things we have to refuse'

The Australian Grand Prix is ​​getting closer by the minute, although McLaren driver Oscar Piastri probably attaches more importance to the event than some of his fellow competitors. The Australian driver will start his second home race in Melbourne, but due to his growing popularity in recent months, his team expects that the fans will hardly leave him alone. However, according to team boss Andrea Stella, the British racing team wants to put a stop to that.

Piastri is now in his second year as a Formula 1 driver, and that comes with high expectations for the young Australian. After a debut season that has even been compared to Lewis Hamilton’s first season, it is expected that Piastri can repeat his tricks this year, and it seems that the fans are happy with that. As the season progressed, the Australian became more and more popular, but Stella is trying to save him from an overcrowded agenda this year.

The emphasis is on preparing for racing according to Stella

According to the Italian team boss, there is no room for additional obligations off the track this year. “This year we are mainly looking at the schedules that the drivers complete during a race weekend,” Stella admitted to Motorsport.com. ‘It is of course important that they have enough time to optimally prepare for racing, but they also need time to relax during a hectic weekend.’ Even though McLaren is taking this into account in 2024, things are slightly different in Melbourne.

‘Actually, very little has changed compared to previous race weekends, although we will be keeping a much closer eye on things in Melbourne. Many applications have already flowed in for media obligations, but we have to refuse a large number if we want to take performance on the track into account.’ Lando Norris, Piastri’s teammate, previously expressed that he is not enthusiastic about all the obligations off the track. ‘I just want to race, because I’m not a fan of all kinds of side issues anyway. I don’t really feel like doing that.’

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