Russell hopes he gave Wolff ‘a headache’ for 2022

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George Russell hopes his remarkable performance in the Sakhir GP has made a strong case for Mercedes to include him in its line-up for 2022.

From sweeping Friday’s practice to qualifying P2 and leading Sunday’s race, and missing out on an outright win through no fault of his own, Russell massively “over-delivered” as Lewis Hamilton’s substitute.

The 22-year-old Williams charger made the most of his opportunity to shine with the championship winning team and now appears as a compelling choice for the Brackley squad for 2022.

“The best way to do your talking is on the track,” Russell said after his outstanding drive in Bahrain.

“This is a performance industry, and I hope this weekend has cemented their views regarding me.

“Mercedes have supported me since the end of 2016. They’ve followed my whole career very closely. Hopefully this is just another step on the ladder.”


Russell’s ended qualifying on Saturday just 0.026s behind Bottas, but on race day the Briton comprehensively outpaced his Black Arrows teammate in the first part of the race as he held a commanding lead.

The Finn reduced the gap thereafter before everything was lost for both drivers during a botched double-stacked pitstop by Mercedes’ crews.

Nevertheless, Russell’s performance wasn’t lost on the Finn who, although he had suffered his unfair share of bad luck, admitted that he had been made to look like a “complete c*** and fool” by his young teammate in the eyes of those who were perhaps unaware of his issues.

“This has been a great weekend of validation, saying actually we probably have been doing a very good job in the Williams this year,” Russell said.

“From Toto’s perspective, hopefully I have given him a headache, not just for 2022, maybe sooner.”

    Read also: Wolff say Hamilton-Russell pairing would be ‘wild ride’, but could happen

Russell is committed to Williams for 2021, as Bottas is to Mercedes. Wolff has dismissed calling into question either driver’s contract, but the Austrian says the future beyond next year is open.

“Now we need to see what the future holds,” he said. “To be honest, I haven’t made up my mind what that means for us.”

Fancy some aspirin for that splitting headache Toto?

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