Jost Capito, former Williams F1 team boss for George Russell, considers him to be the real deal and while many other experts view him as a future Formula 1 world champion. Seldom a driver has taken a seat in a top car with so much advanced praise as the British driver this year. However, Helmut Marko refuses to accept him as a top driver.
This season Russell is at last in a Silver Arrow after two gruelling years at Williams. He had collected his first points with the longstanding British team a year earlier, finishing a respectable 15th in the drivers’ world championship with 16 points.
Especially noticeable was his wet race in Spa qualifying in second place ahead of Mercedes star Lewis Hamilton, which put him on the podium behind winner Max Verstappen in the ‘race’ the following day.
“Without question, the young British driver is sensational in qualifying”
“but if you look at his race speed, he was not far ahead of Latifi,” the Red Bull consultant explains.
“That’s what I want to see first,” Marko told Autorevue.
By 2020, Russell showed glimpses of his potential. At the Sakhir GP, he stepped in at short notice for Hamilton, who had fallen ill with covid, and gave regular driver Valtteri Bottas an immediate thrashing. In the race, only a botched Mercedes stop and a flat tyre prevented Russell’s maiden victory. Many F1 experts consider the 23-year-old a potential world champion at the latest since this desert performance.