Lando Norris wants to be making history at McLaren, not just celebrating it

Can Leclerc banish his Monaco curse this weekend? (2:18)

Nate Saunders discusses Charles Leclerc's poor record in Monaco ahead of this weekend's Grand Prix. (2:18)

MONACO - Lando Norris's Monaco Grand Prix race car is adorned with a livery celebrating McLaren's history and the Brit is still convinced he can write the next great chapter of its Formula One story by winning the team's next world championship.

Last year Norris signed a contract extension with McLaren until the end of 2025, but many in F1 have questioned the logic of the deal given McLaren's failure to fight at the front in recent years.

McLaren's car for the Monte Carlo race features three colours of its previous race winners at Monaco, Le Mans and the Indy 500 -- which make up racing's Triple Crown.

Despite boasting one of the most impressive list of accolades in F1, McLaren has not won a world championship since Lewis Hamilton's 2008 triumph and has won just one grand prix since 2012.

Norris, who was signed to McLaren's driver programme in 2017 and made his F1 debut in 2019, is sure he can end that wait.

"It's special because it's the history of McLaren," Norris told ESPN about the Monaco paint scheme. "It's a nice livery, it's just being part of a team that has achieved a Triple Crown. Some people might not care, but the passionate people who know about racing I think it means a lot.

"Whether you win in Le Mans at any point, whether you win at Indy at any point, whether you win Monaco, or a Formula One world championship, all are extremely difficult to do but very different. McLaren is a team to have done that, so just celebrating the history of McLaren.

"But at the same time I'd love to be a part of the history and creating the history, not just celebrating the past of it... creating it in the present. So I'd prefer to be doing that, but it's lovely and an honour to be part of."

Some have questioned whether Norris can win a title with McLaren, which has been rooted in F1's midfield for his entire stint with the team.

This year, McLaren and midfield rivals Alpine watched Aston Martin leapfrog them both and become a front-running team in the space of one off-season.

When asked if he is still convinced McLaren has the capabilities to win the title down the line, Norris said: "I definitely believe so.

"It's just time. That's the difficult thing to deal with. I wouldn't say I'm the most patient guy, but I've learnt to be a lot more patient since I've joined Formula One.

"It can be for anyone. You can go from winning world championships to finishing P8, P9 the following year. So it's the same for anyone in any position that they're in.

"I want to do it with McLaren, first of all it's just a lot more special to do it that way.

"I think it's a lot cooler to achieve something with a story, going from where we were to hopefully winning. But I also have a contract for the next two years! So I do want to do it with McLaren. I believe they can, otherwise I wouldn't have signed the contract in the first place."

Norris is fully bought into McLaren CEO Zak Brown's vision that the team can be contending for a championship by 2025. This year is pivotal in the team achieving that goal, with its long-awaited windtunnel finally coming into use.

McLaren has previously been using Toyota's in Cologne and Brown believes the team's own facility will help it compete on an even footing with the likes of Red Bull and Ferrari. Brown has also restructured the team's management, which is now led by Andrea Stella, following departures of Andreas Seidl and James Key.

"I'm of course biased because McLaren's the only team I've been with in Formula One but I believe the people we have, with Andrea, with the new lineup of people we have in the factory, I believe we've got what it takes. Especially with the windtunnel coming along, the new simulator, there will be no excuses.

"There's been genuine... not excuses, but reasons for why we're just not able to compete against Red Bull, or Mercedes, or Ferrari, because they have things that made them better than us. Until we have those things we don't want to accept defeat to someone who's just done a better job at the end of the day.

"We're still working on achieving that."