Current George Russell

Who is George Russell asked Titch - well he's is 21 year old from Norfolk who the latest Brit on the F1 grid. For once I can actually say I've watched this kid all the way up the ladder.

I first saw Russell in BRDC F4 (thank you ITV4) and he stood out then because in a field full of kids putting everything on the line for a win he was the only one who had the brain to think about the championship race and realise getting a decent haul of points was sometimes more important than chucking it in do or die style for the win. Low and behold he won the title. I next see him in European F3 in a field containing Felix Rosenqvist, Antonio Giovanazzi and Charles LeClerc. He was mostly midfield that year but spent a lot of time wheel banging with LeClerc. Word in the paddock is the two really don't like each other much. Shortly after that he got the ART seat in GP3 and pretty much walked his way to the title.

Which brings us to last year in F2. I'll be honest as much as I rated Russell I thought he was going to be crushed by Lando Norris - he wasn't. Once again he used his tactical brain to consistently get results and dominate the championship. It was very impressive considering the strength of the field. So Russell comes into F1 with back to back titles in GP3 and F2. The only other person to do that is his mate Charles LeClerc. So Russell is a very deserved addition to the grid.

With all the good stuff out the way it's time to focus on the bad news for Russell. As much as he is probably ecstatic to be in F1 his head is probably dropping at the fact that the team he has signed for have some serious problems. Williams have already missed two days of testing and the car is rumoured to be even slower than last years. So it could be a season of being at the back for George which is all good as long as he beats his team mate right? Well unfortunately this is not a good situation for Russell either as his team mate is Robert Kubica. If Russell beats him it'll be put down to the fact that Bobby is not the same driver after his injuries. If he gets beat by him people will ask why he couldn't beat a veteran who suffered almost career ending injuries. It really is a no win situation.

Russell's saving factor might be the fact he is a Merc junior driver. He has to hope that he has a good enough season to make people forget Ocon is on the sidelines. That paired with Bottas having an awful year could see Mercedes decide to take a chance on him in the A team. Personally I don't think Mercedes would ever run two Brits in their car so it might be the best he can hope for is a Racing Point seat becoming open.

So any thoughts on Russell?
 

Il_leone

Champion Elect
Of the three F2 graduates ( 2.5 Brits) in my opinion Russell has got the short straw with Williams situation at the moment. The most important thing for him to set realistic targets which appears to be beat Kubica at the moment

We will find out just how slow the Williams is tomorrow. As for wanting the Mercedes drive.. he should be put that to the back of his mind for now and make sure he gets enough miles in an F1 car
 

Titch

Champion Elect
Premium Contributor
Well Russell’s story just shows exactly what is wrong with F1.
Having worked hard, done well and arrived at the top , ie F1, you find it’s not an equal playing field. The discrepancies between the teams is a bit like the difference between carting up to F2 and everything in between. How can Liberty not look at that scenario and realise how wrong it is?
If F1 teams were equally matched so F1 young drivers could really do battle with each other and the current top drivers, think how exciting it would be.
Sadly we can only dream.
 

Il_leone

Champion Elect
Kubica fans are clutching straws and if Williams have some serious sense they would drop him but then I look at the alternatives from F2 are not great options
 

The Artist.....

Champion Elect
George Russell really is quite special... He's now gone 28 races without being out-qualified by his team-mate. He's dragged the Williams out of Q1 in 4 races so far this season.

He's got a Mercedes contract in his pocket, but they still favour Bottas over him... Yes, the Mercedes seat (as Hamilton's teammate) would be like going into the dragon's den, but surely he deserves the chance... Bottas is a good second-string for Hamilton; Russell seems like the real-deal.
 

cider_and_toast

Exulted Lord High Moderator of the Apex
Staff Member
Premium Contributor
While Hamilton is in the first Mercedes seat they don't need the real deal they need a good second to back the team leader up and pick up wins when he can't.

George Russell is just a little bit too good.

Having that Merc contract could be something of a millstone around his neck given that there were seats at McLaren and Renault available for next season that went elsewhere.

For Russell to progress next year must be his last at Williams unless, by some miracle they massively move up the grid.

He could well get left behind because he doesn't find himself available to step into a better seat at the right time.
 

The Artist.....

Champion Elect
While Hamilton is in the first Mercedes seat they don't need the real deal they need a good second to back the team leader up and pick up wins when he can't.

George Russell is just a little bit too good.

Having that Merc contract could be something of a millstone around his neck given that there were seats at McLaren and Renault available for next season that went elsewhere.

For Russell to progress next year must be his last at Williams unless, by some miracle they massively move up the grid.

He could well get left behind because he doesn't find himself available to step into a better seat at the right time.
It really depresses me that Mercedes think that they need to have a second-string driver play second-fiddle to Hamilton. The Mercedes car is so dominant that they don't need to put a patsy in the second car....

Hamilton doesn't need to have a second rate driver in the second car. He is good enough to beat most drivers on most days. But at least, if he had a good team-mate, he would have competition.
 

Il_leone

Champion Elect
Like I said Mercedes tend to pair a senior driver with a young driver in their other series such that the young driver will represent Merc in the future years so Russell or Ocon will have to be their 2nd driver unless someone at Merc is demanding they go after Verstappen
 

RasputinLives

Leave me alone I'm on Smoko
Contributor
To be fair to Mercedes that is exactly what every single dominant F1 team has ever done because it's a team sport. Why would the to want their drivers racing each other. Merc have won every championship since to he Hamilton Bottas partnership began so why change it?

It depresses me that people have bought into the BS spun by the teams and media that suggests it would ever be anything different.
 

RasputinLives

Leave me alone I'm on Smoko
Contributor
Like I said Mercedes tend to pair a senior driver with a young driver in their other series such that the young driver will represent Merc in the future years so Russell or Ocon will have to be their 2nd driver unless someone at Merc is demanding they go after Verstappen
Once again you mistaken that this has happened sometimes as a policy. Never happened in F1
 

Il_leone

Champion Elect
Once again you mistaken that this has happened sometimes as a policy. Never happened in F1
Well that is because they could not do it in the past because Mclaren also had a say and the Board were desperate for Schumacher to win with them because he was their junior driver about 20 years ago

Then it did not work with Wehrlein because no one liked his attitude either but they are going to have to do it sooner or later because Hamilton will retire soon so then what Mercedes ? Get Alonso?
 

F1Brits_90

Race Winner
what every single dominant F1 team has ever done
apart from the most famous one
---------------------

but at the moment i think unless your verstappen maybe leclerc. its going to be tough for anyone because as we know from down the years when Hamilton is on top form he is almost unbeatable. i would also say that i dont think at times mercedes is as dominant as the stats have shown. at times he is outperforming that car just like he did in Belgium 2019. but you don't see as he winning.

you have bottas & ocon in that Mercedes they maybe win 1 world title since 2017
 
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