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Russell expects evolution of the W13: 'Things will change so fast'

Russell expects evolution of the W13: 'Things will change so fast'

21 February - 06:00 Last update: 10:23
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GPblog.com

George Russell thinks that in the battle for the World Championship it will be especially important for Mercedes to keep developing. For himself, his switch to the German racing team actually comes at a perfect time, because with the new regulations everything and everyone around him will also start from zero.

Championship of the long haul

"There’s no importance to have a quick start to the season. Ultimately you win a championship over the course of 23 races," Russell said in conversation with GPblog and others. The Mercedes driver cites 2021 as an example. "You only have to look at it last year at Mercedes and Lewis. Max and Red Bull were far superior and so much faster and everyone thought they’d run away, yet Mercedes turned it around and fought back.

The 24-year-old driver argues that continued development of the W13 is going to be the key to success in 2022. Of course it would be nice if the first two Grands Prix of the season are won, but the degree of evolution of the car is decisive. Everyone still knows relatively little about their own car with the new regulations and so there is still a lot of potential to unlock.

"By the end of the season, Mercedes had the fastest package. If you take an average over the year, it was pretty similar. I still think Red Bull had the upper hand but this year the development will be massive. We’ve got to learn about the 18 inch tyres, ground effect and how the two interact with each other. They’ll be some interesting physiologisches when we arrive in Bahrain. But you have got to look further into the distance because things will change so fast," Russell says.

Good time for transfer

The Briton has spent the last three years with the Williams team and now has to get used to a new environment. Everyone is starting from scratch this year with the new rules and so Russell thinks the timing of his transfer is not bad at all.

"I don’t think it’s a negative to change teams. You like to keep consistency across years, but this is the best year to change teams. You’re starting from scratch. Things are starting from zero. I wanted to get into that Mercedes seat as soon as possible but I think that was the perfect time."

Few changes in F1 lineup

Russell is one of only four drivers in total to race for a new team in 2022. Valtteri Bottas and Guanyu Zhou both join Alfa Romeo for the first time, while Alexander Albon was allocated the vacant Williams spot.

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