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Russell: Williams 'very fortunate' to have spare car in Baku

  • Published on 27 Apr 2019 09:10
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  • By: Fergal Walsh

George Russell says that Williams is lucky to have a third chassis available to it at the Azerbaijan Grand Prix.

Russell will race the remainder of the weekend in Williams' spare car after a loose manhole cover destroyed the underside of his FW42 in the opening minutes of free practice one on Friday.

The incident cut short the session for all teams, and Russell was forced to sit out the afternoon session as Williams worked on his car to get it prepared for Saturday.

"I’ll go into tomorrow trying to make the most of our session,” said Russell. “But obviously we don’t have our spare car now.

“Obviously you don’t plan to crash or do anything stupid like that. But the spare car is there for a reason, you’d want to try to go to a spare car when it’s truly needed from something of your own doing, let’s say, and this is completely out of our hands.

“So they’re very fortunate we had that here or else we wouldn’t be racing.”

Lack of spare parts

Williams has had a problem with a lack of spare parts so far this year, with Russell and teammate Robert Kubica being told to drive with care at the opening races of the season.

Russell described how the incident felt from inside the car, stating the built-in fire extinguisher was so cold that it was almost burning him.

“It just came out of nowhere," the Mercedes junior said. "You can’t see these drains really when you’re going that fast down the straights and you’ve got so many on the track it’s just normal to run over them.

“The second I did there was a huge bang. I didn’t feel anything through my back so that was good but I could tell it ripped the floor off, it set the fire extinguisher off and because of that the car ended up turning off.

"The fire extinguisher was so cold it was almost burning me so I didn’t know what was going on at that point.

“So I just jumped out as quick as I could. It’s just an unnecessary amount of pain, damage, a lot of costs [are] going to be incurred because of this incident. It’s frustrating for all of us.”

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  • Team Williams
  • Points 0
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  • Grand Prix 21
  • Country United Kingdom
  • Date of b. Feb 15 1998 (21)
  • Place of b. King's Lynn, United Kingdom
  • Weight 70 kg
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