Lando Norris says McLaren cannot afford to get complacent despite making a strong start to the 2021 Formula 1 season.

Norris starred on his way to a brilliant fourth place finish at the season-opening Bahrain Grand Prix, while teammate Daniel Ricciardo overcame damage on his car to finish P7.

The result sees the Woking squad sit third in the constructors’ championship standings, six points clear of Ferrari, though Norris warned the team has plenty of areas still in need of improvement - including the one-lap pace of its Mercedes-powered MCL35M.

“We have a lot of work to do,” Norris said. "If the other AlphaTauri of [Yuki] Tsunoda was in Q3 they probably would’ve been ahead of us.

“We were ahead of Carlos [Sainz in qualifying] but if he did a good lap he should have been ahead of us. So it’s not like it is perfect. We have a lot of work to do, maybe more in qualifying than the race.

“If we were further back in the race it would’ve been more difficult, and we would not of look quite as good I don’t think we can get complacent just by having a good result. I am happy, there are a lot of positives, but also negatives to work on.”

And despite its positioning in the championship table, Norris insists that McLaren does not boast the third-fastest car.

Asked if McLaren has a better car for Saturday or Sunday, the Briton replied: “Difficult to say. I want to say we did a good job about thinking about [the race].

“Already on Friday and Saturday we were thinking about the race already. The pace seemed easier to maintain. Yesterday realistically we had the fifth fastest car. We are not like the third-best or anything.

“We have work to do and hopefully in Imola we can make a step forward.”