George Russell opens up on what ‘hurt’ him during spell in Lewis Hamilton’s Mercedes

George Russell 'gutted' to miss out on Sakhir GP victory

George Russell has explained what he learned from driving Lewis Hamilton’s Mercedes at the Sakhir Grand Prix and revealed how the driving tactics he uses with Williams “hurt” him with the Silver Arrows.

Russell had not scored a point all season but was granted an opportunity to drive a Mercedes when Hamilton contracted coronavirus.

The 22-year-old impressed and let for the majority of the race until a devastating double-stacked pit stop went horribly wrong.

A late puncture compounded Russell’s afternoon in Bahrain but he was still able to cross the chequered flag in ninth place for his first points-finish.

Mercedes boss Toto Wolff admitted that the young Brit had jumped the queue and was in serious consideration for a seat in the future.

Many predict that Russell could be the heir to Hamilton’s throne, whenever the 35-year-old decides to call it a day.

However, Russell has explained that he did struggle with somethings which held him back with the Silver Arrows.

“I think the thing I’ve learned most is that you have to be adaptable,” he said.

“My sort of driving style I did in the Williams actually hurt me slightly in the Mercedes.

“So when I came back to the Williams and I tried to implement some of the things that I did in that Bahrain race, but I couldn’t do it in the Williams.

“I think that sort of reinforced to me that you have to be open minded and you have to adapt to whatever the car is giving you.

“So if one guy drives like that in a Mercedes, it doesn’t mean you can drive like that in a Williams, and vice versa.”

Russell is managed by Mercedes but his F1 contract is with Williams.

He aims to help the F1’s bottom side end their points drought in 2021 while continuing to increase his own stock.

“I think it’s continuing the form, and continuing the positive attitude internally with the team and externally,” he added.

“It’s not getting frustrated with the poor performance here, and continue to try to push Williams further forward.

“I think Mercedes believe in me, they’ve given me the opportunity, and they’ve always had my back.

“Now it’s sort of my duty that I stay true, and that I don’t suddenly change over the course of next year because of certain circumstances, and turn into something that I’m not currently.”

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