Barcelona does not bring good luck to Mercedes. In 2016 it was a crash on the first lap between the Silver Arrows of Nico Rosberg and Lewis Hamilton that paved the way for Max Verstappen’s first career victory.
Today the two riders of the Brackley team took a big risk again during qualifying for the Spanish Grand Prix, making contact on the starting straight during Q2 when George Russell did not notice that his teammate was arriving behind him and crashed moved towards him, bumping him.
A great thrill, which could have cost even a bad accident, given the high speed at which it occurred, but fortunately it was resolved only with a damaged front wing on Hamilton’s car. For the incident, Russell also ended up under investigation, but both tried to minimize it, speaking of an internal communication error within the team.
“I didn’t know he was there. Clearly when you start the lap you look ahead, especially when you have a car in front, and I was slipstreaming Sainz. Soon after, when I avoided Carlos, I found Lewis there. It was a mistake by communication within the team, because obviously that’s not how you want to start a ride,” explained Russell.
And Hamilton’s reconstruction is not very different: “It was a bit of a lack of communication. I was preparing the lap, so I had started pushing from turn 12 and George seemed to want to go back to the pits, instead he continued. Then I saw that he moved to the right and I thought he wanted to give me the slipstream, but no…”.
George Russell, Mercedes F1 W14
Photo by: Mark Sutton
The result was also rather disappointing for Russell, because he didn’t even manage to pass the gap in Q2 and tomorrow he will be forced to line up 12th
“The contact didn’t contribute to the lack of performance from the car. It just didn’t work for me and I felt a big change from FP3, so it’s a shame to be in this position,” explained George.
Hamilton, on the other hand, ate his hands a bit for a little mistake he made on the decisive lap, without which he seems convinced he could have attacked the front row. From fifth place on the grid, however, he seems confident he can battle for the podium.
“Today I was practically on the front row up to turn 10, then I lost two tenths. This is difficult to accept, but tomorrow I think I can challenge the riders in front of me and I will certainly try,” concluded Lewis.
Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes-AMG, George Russell, Mercedes-AMG, are interviewed on stage
Photo by: Sam Bloxham / Motorsport Images
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