Andreas Seidl believes Lando Norris’ impressive performance at the season-opening Bahrain Grand Prix shows he’s made the “next step” as a Formula 1 driver.

Norris finished fourth at the Bahrain International Circuit, beating Red Bull’s Sergio Perez - who was forced to start from the pit lane after an electrical issue on the formation lap - and Ferrari’s Charles Leclerc by an impressive 20-second margin.

Embarking on his third year in F1, Seidl says Norris has learnt a lot from his previous two seasons with McLaren.

“I think we simply have seen all weekend, especially in qualifying and the race, that Lando made the next step,” Seidl said after the Bahrain Grand Prix. “It's something we ought to expect from a young driver, especially in his first years to make these steps because that’s how you become a top guy in this sport.

“You could see already over the winter he made the next step in terms of personality, in terms of how you approach this season also. Again, digesting everything he has seen, done and learned during last season.

“Simply, it was great to see how he pulled it off because it really was a very controlled race from his side. He pushed when he had to push and he controlled the race when he was in a position to control it. In the end it was good to see we had the third-best car.”

Seidl noted how Norris has improved his communication with his engineers.

“If I look at the way he works together with his engineers, how he communicates during a practice session, during qualifying, during the race, under stress, you simply see he was building up the experience and the confidence over the last two years,” Seidl added.

“Now he implements again everything digested over winter and he has learned from himself, and that results in the lap times and the performance in the race.

“I think tyre management, he did a sensational job, he would push when it was needed because we didn’t know how it would end up with Perez, how much he had left towards the end of the race but it was fully under control from Lando and that was obviously great to see.”