George Russell and Valtteri Bottas’ crash in Imola led many to start handing out opinions on the matter. One of them was Mercedes boss Toto Wolff.
Wolff managed to see the humor in the situation and teased that a crash like this would not earn Russell a seat in Mercedes. Rather, it would be better for him to look for a seat in a ‘Renault Clio Cup’ team.
However, this banter did not play well with former F1 champion Alan Jones.
Jones was not pleased with Mercedes having an influence over Williams and a driver who has a contract with Williams.
He said, “The other thing that pissed me off a little bit was Toto saying that if he’s not careful, he’ll end up racing a bloody Renault sedan or something.
“Look, I know he can be a reserve driver for Mercedes and that Mercedes supply engines to Williams. But if I was George Russell, I’d just say, ‘pull your head in, I drive for Williams, not for you.”
Jones was a former world champion with Williams. He thinks that there are a number of factors that hinder Formula 1’s growth.
He said, “There is too much outside influence from every direction. Toto Wolff runs the Mercedes team, and he’s within his rights to criticise George and to express his disappointment. But to come out and say something like that was a bit silly.”
It is well known that Russell and Wolff are close. Russell is expected to be in contention for a seat at Mercedes next year. However, Wolff’s comment seemed to push the limits of their relationship.
Russell has to take it upon himself to not miss out points for his team. This is his second incident in around a season where he missed out on a top-10 finish.
Do you think Russell can minimize these mistakes and prove to Mercedes that he is a worthy driver? Let us know in the comments!