Lando Norris is expecting the return to the cockpit of his Formula 1 car to be a “big shock” to the body following a prolonged spell without racing. 

The Briton has not raced competitively since the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix in December and last drove his McLaren car during pre-season testing in February, before the coronavirus pandemic wreaked havoc on the 2020 F1 season schedule. 

10 races have been postponed or cancelled due to the ongoing crisis, but F1 has revealed plans to finally get the season underway with a number of behind closed door races in Europe, beginning in Austria on July 5. 

Speaking in a live chat on the official F1 Instagram channel, Norris conceded there is no way to prepare the body for what will come once he finally gets back behind the wheel later this year. 

“I’ve been focusing on the things I can focus on, which is my training, physically,” he explained. 

“I’m trying to keep that up from pre-season testing, especially because when you go back into driving, it's going to be a shock for the body.

“To be able to go from doing nothing - not even testing or driving an F3 car or any car of any sort - it's literally going from driving a road car, and I've not even done that that much, to jumping in to one of the fastest cars in the world, pulling x amount of G-forces around the corner. It's a big shock.

“The body changes and gets used to driving a car,” he added. “You can do all the training you want at home [with] the neck exercises, but the movement when you jump in a Formula 1 car, you can't replicate identically in training.

“It's a shock to everyone's body - you can be one of the fittest guys in Formula 1 or the world, but it's still tough on the human body.”

F1 chiefs are still hoping to stage a campaign consisting of between 15 and 18 races despite the uncertain and developing nature of the COVID-19 situation.

 

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