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Russell 'feels ready' to be Williams' lead driver

  • Published on 06 Oct 2019 10:11
  • comments 6
  • By: Dieter Rencken & Fergal Walsh

George Russell believes that he is ready to lead the Williams team in its driver line-up despite being in only his rookie Formula 1 season.

The Briton will have a new teammate at the Grove squad next year, as Robert Kubica announced last month that he would be leaving at the end of the season.

MORE: Kubica in no rush to decide 2020 role | Williams provides further explanation on Kubica's Sochi retirement

Russell's 2020 teammate has not yet been confirmed, however it is believed that its current reserve driver Nicholas Latifi will be promoted to the race seat.

Russell insists that he has no preference on who his teammate is for the 2020 campaign, but is hopeful that he is paired with the fastest driver possible as he aims to prove himself.

"My preference is to have the fastest driver next to me, because I'm doing my best to prove what I can do to everybody," Russell said.

"I want the opportunity to show that. But ultimately from my side, just focus on myself and get on with my own job with my engineers."

Russell says he is ready to lead the team, but would equally be happy to have someone experienced such as Nico Hulkenberg to form up alongside him.

"But I feel ready to take control and lead the team if it was a rookie to come alongside me. But equally, I'd be just as happy to have an experienced guy such as Hulkenberg coming in who has a reputation and experience. 

"I'm sure I can learn a lot from him. But again, it gives me a lot of opportunity to show what I can do."

Replies (6)

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  • He talks the talk and walks the walk. He has been beating his team mate to a pulp. I wonder how he'd drive alongside someone like the Hulk.

    • + 0
    • Oct 6 2019 - 11:01
    • He is definitely promising. But I have a hard time assessing his speed and skill for two reasons (1) he drives a Williams and they don't race people very often and (2) his teammate is Kubica, which might make most drivers on the grid appears impressive.

      I hope he gets a good teammate next year to provide a good benchmark. But Williams being Williams I am sure they will get a mediocre paydriver

      • + 0
      • Oct 6 2019 - 18:03
    • Kean

      Posts: 610

      I rate him high on the count of his history; he won GP3 and F2 titles in his rookie year, just as Leclerc did. His complete dominance over Kubica this year is not only down to Kubica being over the hill and injured but also because Russell is just really fast. He's definitely on the level of Norris, not quite on the level as Leclerc. Plus Leclerc is a killer, Russell is a gentleman (at least I get that feeling) and that might, in the future, be to Russell's detriment.

      • + 1
      • Oct 6 2019 - 21:28
  • He' s certainly no shrinking violet @Calle - what I like a lot about him is he is extremely matured for such a young man - more so than Leclerc in many ways.

    • + 0
    • Oct 6 2019 - 14:46
  • Of all the teams, Williams doesn't need a lead driver at the moment. They need more funding. Even in the traditional sense, Russell could never be that driver who could rally the team behind him, neither in long term prospects of the team nor with technical experience. But, the man has a great ability for PR talk. Williams should perhaps hand over the leadership of their social media to him.

    • + 0
    • Oct 6 2019 - 22:03
  • JuJuHound

    Posts: 195

    George is Williams prisoner. No matter what skills he has got it depends on Williams 2020 pace which IMO wont change much due to lack of funds. He needs to get away fast to not end up like Wehrlein.

    • + 0
    • Oct 7 2019 - 09:45

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  • Team Williams
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  • Grand Prix 21
  • Country United Kingdom
  • Date of b. Feb 15 1998 (21)
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  • Weight 70 kg
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