George Russell: Now we need to improve in qualifying

George Russell: Now we need to improve in qualifying

At Zandvoort, George Russell started sixth and said no one would stop him from fighting for the podium – and it turned out in the end…

Q: George, great job. In sixth you started the race in second, with the best result of the season. Do you feel like you made the most of the situation?
George Russell: Yes, exactly. If they told me before the race that I would finish second I would be very happy about that. But in the race it turned out that our team had a real chance of winning.

We decided to take a risk, from the start we opted for a one pit stop strategy, and we were very fast on track. The team worked hard this weekend and we showed the speed potential of our car. It’s a shame Lewis wasn’t on the podium with us, he worked hard and was very fast in the race.

Q: Were you surprised by the speed of the car on hard tires?
George Russell: Yes and no. This weekend the car is fast from the first lap. On Friday I already knew that the weekend would turn out much better for us than in Spa. The Belgian circuit revealed the weaknesses of our car and Zandford highlighted the strengths.

I can’t imagine what awaits us in Monza, probably something in between. Hopefully the pace is closer to what we saw in the Netherlands.

Q: After losing speed in Spa, is your car back to the form it had in Hungary this weekend?
George Russell: These tracks are very similar – high downforce, lots of medium speed corners, which our car handles well.
Furthermore, completely different tracks await us, but gradually the car becomes more efficient – and you can already fight for the victory, but for this you have to start higher.

Q: Do you still think you can win the race with the car this year?
George Russell: We have a good race pace. If we started in the top three in Zandvoort, we could win the race. But if we keep qualifying in sixth – eighth position, it will be very difficult to win. We have to improve our qualifications.

Q: Given what happened to Lewis after the reboot, were you concerned about what would happen to you if you stayed on Medium? When you attacked Lewis, you almost collided…
George Russell: The team had to make a difficult decision about changing tires before the restart, because if we both entered the pit lane, we would give way to Max. And if both refused to change tires, they would both lose to him. The best option was to split the strategy – one car in front of Max, second behind – and see what happens.

I’m sure Lewis wanted it too. We all want to win the race. Yes, we like to earn points, but then nobody knows who finished second. I attacked, he defended – there could be an incident, but we have a lot of respect for each other. There are no problems here.

Source: F1 News

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