George Russell and Lewis Hamilton did not have the best moments during the Japanese Grand Prix. With Russell in the front and Hamilton right behind him, team orders came through to ruin it for the team. After the Singapore Grand Prix, it has been evident that there is a little tension surrounding the teammates. And soon they could be seen fighting to be ahead of each other. But this cost the team a position.
The two teammates saw an immense battle after which Russell was ahead of Hamilton. But after team orders asking to swap the positions, Russell lost his position to Hamilton. The race came to an end but the tension remained. Russell was seen getting out of his car and walking past Hamilton. The Brit did not even look at his teammate and was completely silent during the team radio after the race.
“there’s a good atmosphere at Mercedes”, yeah George didn’t say a word on the radio at the end of the race and passed by Lewis in the pitlane without even looking at him pic.twitter.com/gENduErPZK
— M | 4463 ㅅ⃝ (@mercbynight) September 24, 2023
Lewis Hamilton finished his race right behind Charles Leclerc. Although he managed to break off the double Ferrari finish, it cost Mercedes a position. George Russell finished his race behind Carlos Sainz. The Brit was oddly quiet throughout the end and was not heard speaking on the radio. He lost two places by the end, one by team orders and another by an overtake by Sainz. The team lost good points, however, Russell said in his media interview that there is a “good atmosphere” at Mercedes.
George Russell fails to deliver the same strategy as Carlos Sainz
George Russell gave it his all during the race. His last race at Singapore saw him losing the entire race by the very end in a fraction of a minute. However, the Brit seemed to have done his research and come prepared for the Japanese race which backfired. Russell was driving ahead of Hamilton. Although Hamilton had much more pace, they were being chased by Carlos Sainz in the Ferrari really closely.
Carlos makes the move stick on George Russell 👇 pic.twitter.com/0DQmU8DneA
— Sky Sports F1 (@SkySportsF1) September 24, 2023
This gave Russell the idea to block the Ferrari behind by giving Lewis Hamilton DRS. This genius trick was first seen being used by Carlos at the Singapore Grand Prix. He gave Lando Norris the push needed to hold back both the Mercedes drivers. With his trick being used against him, Russell said Hamilton could take the spot in the last lap. This way both the Mercedes drivers would have collected good points for the team.
However, he was asked to swap immediately. This left Hamilton fighting with Sainz who had great pace and held him off. Meanwhile, George Russell was left behind in P7. Russell was clearly upset over the team radio and was seen ignoring Hamilton. As for Sainz, he gained one position over the Mercedes team. Ferrari is now close to Mercedes in the Constructor’s Championship.