Today marks the weekend of the British Grand Prix, and George Russell is feeling optimistic about the Silverstone race thanks to the upgrades Mercedes has added to the W13 and the layout of the track which will match the strengths of the car.
Monaco, Baku, and Montreal were all stacked against the W13 which doesn’t fare well with tight, winding tracks. But Russell is looking forward to the open tarmac of Silverstone:
“I think when you look the last three races, they’ve all been pretty similar with regards to sort of slow speed, relatively bumpy street-style circuits,” Russell said when asked by Motorsport.com about prospects for this weekend.
“So I think this high-speed nature of Silverstone, a smoother surface, will definitely play to our hand a bit more than it has done in the previous three events.
“But still, there’s no guarantees because as I’ve said before, every race we go to we’re sort of unlocking a different issue from the car. But we have relative faith that this will be a more competitive weekend for us, not only just with the upgrades, but just with the nature of the circuit.”
Russell also compared the performance of Mercedes to the likes of competitors Red Bull and Ferrari, admitting that he won’t be as fast:
“I think probably on their pace. I can’t see us being ahead of them.
“Especially on Saturday, they definitely seem to have the upper hand in qualifying, I think we’re the only team that closes the gap to the front on a Sunday, rather than that gap extending.
“Normally those gaps always extend when you go to the race. And I think that shows a lot of promise for us. Because we are just lacking downforce at the moment. But there is actually a good race car there. And what I just said about closing that gap clearly shows that.
“It’s going to be interesting. Obviously, this was the first time that cars have really been tested at high-speed corners now, especially in the last couple of races.
“And I think it will be tricky with the edge of the cars smashing against the floor. And we’ll all have to deal with that, probably.”
Reflecting on the fact he hasn’t finished lower than P5, he feels he wants to do more:
“It’s obviously a nice little statistic, but it doesn’t really account to anything, when you get to the end of the season. If it accounts to win a championship then great.
“But obviously, just finishing between P3 and P5 isn’t going to get you in the top three of the championship probably by the end of the season. So we’re here to win, we’re here to fight. And I’m proud that we have maximised the results. But we’re here to go for more.”