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Tuesday, October 26, 2021

Wolff wouldn’t be stunned to see Russell lead opening lap in Sochi

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After qualifying second at Spa final month, Williams driver Russell put in one other spectacular show in damp situations to secure P3 in qualifying at the Sochi Autodrom on Saturday.

The efficiency solely added to the thrill round Russell forward of his transfer to Mercedes for 2022, when he’ll accomplice seven-time world champion Lewis Hamilton.

Russell and Hamilton will begin side-by-side on the grid right this moment after Hamilton slipped to fourth place within the closing phases of qualifying.

However Mercedes F1 boss Wolff felt that P4 was “perhaps not the worst of beginning positions for Lewis” because of the long term right down to Flip 2 on the opening lap and the tempo of his automotive in a straight line.

“In all probability the very best place to start out from is P3,” Wolff mentioned.

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“We’ve seen that final 12 months and the years earlier than, so P4 isn’t a disaster. Quite the opposite, it could even give alternatives.”

George Russell, Williams within the Press Convention

Picture by: FIA Pool

Requested by Autosport about Russell’s show and probabilities given he’ll begin P3, Wolff tipped the Williams driver to probably be main early in Sochi.

“I’d not be stunned if George is main the race after Flip 2,” Wolff mentioned.

“And that will probably be good enjoyable to observe. So long as Lewis could make up positions, we’d have the current and the longer term working in P1 and P2.

“However joking apart, [Russell] has proven sturdy efficiency right this moment. He has been taking huge dangers by being the primary one to pit for softs, however equally the place he was, in all probability qualifying eighth or ninth, that was the proper factor to do from Williams’ facet and George’s facet.

“However you continue to have to convey it residence and that is what he did.”

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Wolff additionally made observe of Hamilton’s present team-mate, Valtteri Bottas, for his tempo via apply on Friday forward of an anticipated cost up the order within the race.

“With Valtteri, his tempo was great yesterday, the quickest future tempo on the hards that was there,” Wolff mentioned.

“I anticipate a superb outcome for him.”

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