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Sunday, April 21, 2024

Mercedes made “large step ahead” with F1 qualifying tempo

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Whereas Charles Leclerc was unable to repeat his session-topping Q2 time, clearing the best way for Max Verstappen to grab pole position, Russell led the Mercedes cost by operating third quickest.

Verstappen clocked a 1m29.179s effort aboard his Crimson Bull, with Russell crossing the road 0.306s down. Crew-mate Lewis Hamilton, in the meantime, will begin from ninth on the grid.

Russell heralded the Silver Arrows for having made vital progress with its qualifying efficiency because of the simulator work accomplished following the pre-season take a look at.

Giving credit score to the mileage put in by the simulator drivers – with the Mercedes line-up led by Frederik Vesti, Mick Schumacher and Anthony Davidson – Russell stated: “We have had some actually nice drivers again at base doing the work within the simulator.

“Lewis and I’ve been again on the simulator as nicely, fine-tuning the set-up, making some enhancements.

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“We have clearly made a giant step ahead in single-lap – within the qualifying tempo. We hope we’ve not compromised the race tempo in any respect. I believe it will be a detailed struggle between everyone… apart from Max.”

George Russell, Mercedes-AMG F1 Crew

Photograph by: Sam Bloxham / Motorsport Images

Russell underlined that he and Hamilton have been far more comfy within the new W15 challenger in comparison with its predecessors. The W14 particularly was recognized for its spikey rear axle.

Nonetheless, regardless of the extra compliant drive, Russell – who certified sixth in Bahrain final 12 months – acknowledged that Mercedes nonetheless had an extended technique to get well to take the struggle to Verstappen.

“All people on the manufacturing facility has achieved a tremendous job to offer Lewis and I a automobile that we really feel a lot happier with, a base that we are able to construct upon,” stated Russell.

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“However in the end, Max remains to be on the market in entrance. We have nonetheless acquired some catching as much as do.

“However I believe after we have a look at our qualifying performances over the past two years in Bahrain and our race tempo, beginning P3 is a good place…

“Crimson Bull remains to be so robust in the meanwhile. Max is doing a very nice job. He is acquired the brand new tyres as nicely.

“I believe if there’s a chance to take the lead, we’ll go for it. However in the end, I believe the race for all of us is for second…let’s hope for some craziness.”

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