George Russell ‘fearful’ of going up against Hamilton at Mercedes

George Russell joined Mercedes from Williams at the start of the season and it is fair to say that expectations from him are already quite high.

In many ways, Mercedes has brought a young driver in at the tail-end of Lewis Hamilton’s career to allow him the time to acclimatize and propel future Mercedes challenges.

While Russell’s early performances this season may be seen by some as being enough cause to create friction in the team, this is far from the truth. At least that’s what Russell believes.

“I’m not going to go out there trying to be the leader of the team, when I’m going up against the greatest of all time who’s been here for 10 years,” Russell said.

“He is like the captain of the team and that’s how it should be.”

Russell is happy to learn from Hamilton

Lewis Hamilton and George Russell. Credit: skysports.com

Russell goes on to speak about how much he has been learning from teammate Hamilton.

“I think if there’s something I already admire from Lewis is that he put a lot of effort into dabbling into other sports, into music. It’s a way to take your mind away from it,” he said.

“I’m so focused on my racing that you know I gave all of my life to be successful inside that cockpit but sometimes you can overdo it.

“If you don’t give yourself a second to breathe, you will just get suffocated over there and you won’t be able to get the most out of your performance.”

Russell still wants to make his own mark

Lewis Hamilton and George Russell. Credit: planetf1.com

However, this should not be mistaken for Russell simply accepting his fate as being second fiddle to Hamilton.

With a car that is performing visibly better than that of Lewis, Russell did vent some frustration during the Australian Grand Prix.

The team radio exchange could be heard giving Russell instructions to focus more on management of his tyres to pace his race better. His ruthlessness could be seen in his voice as he said, “That’s not what I want to hear”.

That might just be a little taste into the mind of the youngster, who is media privy to accept and respect Lewis’ position in the team, but also not afraid to establish his own credentials.

The dynamics of this partnership will surely be fascinating to follow as the season progress.

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