It seems like there is about to be some more drama, and that too off the track instead of on it, for Mercedes these days. Since Mercedes made a bold decision and brought young talent George Russel on the board, sidelining a much more experienced Valtteri Bottas, an electric rivalry buzz has spread.
On top of that, Russell ended up beating Lewis Hamilton, the 7-time champion only last season – this commendable performance by Russel has only added to the turbulent situation at hand.
During the very recent Japanese GP, instead of showing brotherhood, the two were more ‘Fast & Furious.’ While a majority of drivers usually aim to beat the competition, it did look like Russell and Hamilton were busy outdoing each other. Plus, that radio message left by Russell, “Are we fighting each other or what,” makes it obvious.
Drama. Drama. Drama.
Here’s What EXACTLY Happened!
Russell recently sat down for an interview with Tom Clarkson on the FY Beyond the Grid podcast. The youngster is slated to celebrate his hundredth Grand Prix in Austin. If we do put that into perspective, that happens to be multiple races like the iconic Jackie Stewart actually did in his whole career.
Russell even confidently said, “I really feel like I’m only just getting started… I think I’m performing at a really high level.” Unfortunately, he did not stop there.
In a not-very subtly nod to his teammate from Mercedes, he further said, “I’m really happy with my own personal performance, but I recognize that you need to sustain this performance and be ready for when the car gives you that opportunity. And I think Max and Lewis are a perfect example. Yeah, Max [Verstappen] isn’t suddenly one second faster a driver than he was in 2020, and Lewis isn’t suddenly one second a lap slower than he was in 2020.” – Umm, Ouch!
Russell’s concluding words actually shed light on F1’s frustrating reality – even when a driver is skilled exceptionally, they have to wait for the right opportunities. He also said that he is not the only one in this position currently, actually suggesting that there are many others waiting for their opportunity to actually shine based on the cars as well as the situations they are in.
Russell’s belief that he is just getting started strictly resonates with the sentiment that there is a major change on the horizon. It is not just about the total number of races but also the intent as well as the mindset behind each race.
While Russell is slated to rise, he is also very realistic about the challenges lying ahead since the young gun is familiar with the politics and intricacies of F1.
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