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Mercedes “getting slower” throughout F1 rounds as an alternative of rivals enhancing

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Russell was second-fastest aboard the Mercedes W15 throughout FP2 on the Jeddah road circuit earlier than qualifying in seventh place, however he would solely go on to realize one place through the 50-lap race.

That place got here courtesy of one-time chief Lando Norris dropping to eighth after operating out of sync, the McLaren driver having stayed out for an extended first stint whereas others capitalised by pitting throughout an early security automobile that was required after Aston Martin racer Lance Stroll clouted the obstacles and retired.

Russell likened the race weekend to the Bahrain season opener. There, team-mate Lewis Hamilton led a 1-2 in FP2, Russell then certified third and completed the GP in fifth.

However slightly than this dropping again being owed to different groups enhancing because the spherical wears on, Russell has attributed it to Mercedes “getting slower” throughout the classes.

“We’re nonetheless actually making an attempt to grasp this automobile as a result of we’ve got proven true efficiency at factors during the last two weekends,” stated Russell.

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“FP1, straight out of the field, we had been prime of the timesheets and at all times within the prime three. FP2, P2. Then, each weekends, the tempo simply falling away from us. That hasn’t been our opponents getting sooner; that is been us getting slower.

George Russell, Mercedes F1 W15

Photograph by: Steven Tee / Motorsport Images

“So, we have to perceive why that’s. However it’s tremendous margins now.

“It’s so shut with ourselves, McLaren, Aston. Charles [Leclerc, Ferrari] is only a smidge forward.

“We simply must faucet into it a bit extra.”

Russell crossed the road in Saudi Arabia nearly 40 seconds behind winner Max Verstappen, with Sergio Perez and Leclerc finishing the rostrum.

He was additionally overwhelmed by McLaren’s Oscar Piastri and Fernando Alonso within the sole surviving Aston Martin.

Russell and Hamilton had complained about their automobiles bouncing all through the weekend, however the former reckoned the issues for the W15 had been extra widespread.

“I assume there’s extra to it,” when requested by Autosport in regards to the main reason behind the efficiency dropoff. “It is so advanced nowadays. These automobiles are so difficult.

George Russell, Mercedes F1 W15

George Russell, Mercedes F1 W15

Photograph by: Andy Hone / Motorsport Images

“While you couple that with the tyres, the tyres are very tough as effectively. Proper now, I haven’t got the solutions.”

Russell did, nevertheless, keep that the sphere stays “fairly tight” behind clear pacesetter Crimson Bull.



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