Nigel Mansell stings Lewis Hamilton pride with savage jibe; ‘Opportunistic’ George Russell gets rich praise

Former F1 world champion Nigel Mansell is known to be outspoken in his views and his latest comments are unlikely to please one Mercedes driver.

Mansell was recently interviewed by Adrian Flux and he was quite candid in his views with regard to both George Russell and Hamilton.

Known to form fierce rivalries on the track, Mansell admits that he now understands why other drivers didn’t like him back in the day.

Mansell spoke about how he has been rather impressed with George Russell in his debut season for Mercedes and predicted big things in the future for him.

Russell has undoubtedly been one of the bright sparks for Mercedes in a season that has not gone as per plan so far.

The 24-year-old was the only driver across the circuit to lodge a top-5 finish in the opening eight races.

This coincided with a period where Hamilton was struggling behind the wheels and clearly looking unhappy with the car at his disposal.

On the back of what was surely a heartbreaking 2021 campaign for Hamilton, this year was supposed to be his chance at redemption.

However, the Mercedes W13 did not help him in this regard and having reached the summer break with a sequence of podium finishes, Hamilton still trails Verstappen by over 100 points.

With Mercedes yet to register a single race win this season, Hamilton and Russell have both ended the first leg of the season well.

What did Nigel Mansell say?

Source: Autosport International/LAT Images
Nigel Mansell. Credit:

Both Russell and Hamilton have achieved podium finishes in the last two races, with the seven-time world champion finishing P2 for the second time running in Hungary.

Keeping a close eye on the drivers’ standings, Mansell has argued that Hamilton is yet to give his 100% this season.

“I like both George Russell and Lando Norris,” Mansell said.

“I think the opportunity that George has cast on the fact that Lewis hasn’t decided to dust off his right foot yet. I think he’s taking it easy.”

He [Russell] is doing a great job and I think Lando when the car is performing, he’s put some great results in.”

Focusing on British drivers on the circuit, Mansell ignored the most successful one of the lot, at least based on history.

There will also be some who will believe Hamilton does not deserve high praise for his exploits, especially given how far off the pace he has fallen this season compared to 2021.

It is also likely that Hamilton, who is currently P6 in the drivers’ standings, may finish the season without a single race win for the first time in his career.

It is a much longer schedule than before though and with nine races to go, Hamilton will hope Mercedes’ proposed upgrades help him to avoid further agony..

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