The Emilia Romagna Grand Prix had several key highlights that became the talk of the town. The largest of these highlights was the collision between Valtteri Bottas and George Russell.
The collision has led many to believe that the incident might compromise Russell’s relationship with Mercedes.
It all unfolded on lap 34, when Russell was eying an opportunity to pass Bottas. Surprised by a defense into the braking zone, Russell found his tyres on the wet part of the track. This led his car to slide right into Bottas’ car and their race ended in disaster, bringing out red flags.
Just after the crash, Russell went over to Bottas and smacked him on his helmet to which the Finn replied with a middle finger. Words were exchanged about the incident during post-race interviews as both put the blame on the other.
Finally Toto Wolff, who is managing both the drivers, disclosed that Russell has ‘lots to learn’ and Bottas ‘shouldn’t have been there.’
Soon after, Russell issued an apology on his social media.
“I know I should have handled the whole situation better….I apologise to Valterri, to my team and to anyone who felt let down by my actions,” he said.
Russell has been associated with Mercedes for a while now. The outfit added the Brit to its Young Driver Program in 2017.
Since then, Russell has showed exceptional driving with Williams and even claimed a Formula 2 title. He has also managed to break into Q2 on a more regular basis often competing for points.
His consistent performances and communication with Wolff has kept him in the frontline as a contender for a Mercedes seat.
Russell also had a standout performance for Mercedes at last year’s Sakhir Grand Prix. His drive then was regarded as a highly successful one and put him in the outfit’s good books.
While it is true that Russell has a lot to learn, one must not forget that he is only in his third year. It is difficult to find the perfect balance between risk mitigation and overachieving.
All the Brit has to do now is to prevent outbursts like these in the future and keep his head low.
Do you think Russell will become a part of Mercedes next year? Let us know in the comments below!