Mercedes are still a little short of being able to compete with Red Bull this season. Nevertheless, Lewis Hamilton and George Russell are doing their best to secure podium finishes. But the seven-time world champion’s team-mate is making more mistakes than he used to at the German outfit, and he was keen to explain why.
A dominant F1 team until three years ago, Mercedes are going through a more difficult time. Lewis Hamilton and George Russell are fighting for podiums, but they are not really in a position to challenge Max Verstappen for victories. In fact, the 25-year-old driver seems to be less comfortable with his Mercedes this season.
Hamilton more consistent this year
Lewis Hamilton, a seven-time world champion, has always been a formidable force on the track. While Russell brought with him the promise of youth and the fervour of a driver looking to establish his legacy, the intricacies of adapting to a new team and car in the second year, combined with the pressures of racing alongside Hamilton, have posed significant challenges.
A few noticeable errors during crucial moments, like the incidents at Monaco and Singapore, hint at Russell’s struggles. These might be attributed to his aggressive approach, aiming to prove himself, or simply the teething troubles of adjusting to a different environment. The weight of expectations, both from the team and personal ambitions, can also play a part in a young driver’s performance trajectory.
The seven-time world champion’s team-mate has certainly made more mistakes, two of which cost him podium places in Monaco and Singapore. As a result, George Russell was keen to explain.
“It’s about pushing the limits”
“There’s certainly a reason for each of them and it’s just about pushing the limits. In both cases it’s about pushing the boundaries and trying to get more out of it than you can. When I look back at the years when I was winning championships in single-seater or karting,
“I was really the driver who kept getting results. It’s a long-term game and that’s what I did last year. This year we’re rolling the dice a bit more and really going for big results.
“You saw it in Singapore, at Zandvoort, staying on slicks on a wet track, we obviously made a mistake, but that’s another reason why I’m outperforming myself,” began the Mercedes driver in comments reported by Frances’ NextGen-Auto website.
“You’re always looking for better”
Emphasising the competitive nature of the sport, Russell added: “You are constantly competing against the best drivers in the world. It is not our goal to settle for second or third, we always aim higher. In cases like my mishap with Williams, I was aware that I had to give everything to maintain my position.
“Had I not done that, I would have regretted it. Similarly, in Singapore, it would have been equally disappointing to be cautious on the final lap and let Lewis pass. Every move, every decision, it’s all part of the race.”
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