Some pieces of the puzzle for the Formula 1 starting field 2021 have fallen into place: Ferrari will compete with Charles Leclerc and Carlos Sainz, McLaren with Daniel Ricciardo and Lando Norris. It remains unclear what will happen to world champion Mercedes-Benz.
After the confirmation of Sainz at Ferrari it was decided: Lewis Hamilton will not be in a red car in the medium term. Former Grand Prix driver Marc Surer says: “It may or may not be a coincidence that Mercedes team boss Toto Wolff is privately involved with Aston Martin as an investor. However, Hamilton may feel that this great Mercedes era in Formula 1 is coming to an end. A superiority may not be that great anymore if you have to work with a budget cover. I can well imagine that Hamilton ponders a lot. »
The Basler continues: “If Hamilton stays, then he will work to ensure that Bottas stays too. Because he knows exactly that he has no problems with this driver. Mercedes has an excellent alternative. I would definitely put a young pilot in the car and George Russell is imposing himself here. Bottas is a first-class number 2 for me, but I don’t see him as the future world champion. If you build a young pilot, you have the prospect of finding a driver who can take Hamilton’s place someday. »
The 22-year-old George Russell – 2017 GP3 champion and 2018 Formula 2 champion – is currently housed by Mercedes at Mercedes. He witnessed how his long-time companions Alex Albon (Red Bull Racing) and Charles Leclerc (Ferrari) stayed with top teams and admits: «It makes me a little jealous. But I know my chance will come. Of course, I would like to be on par with my long-time buddies today. But sometimes you have to be patient. Nico Rosberg, for example, came into Formula One at a very young age, but then it took a few years before he could finally achieve his first victory. »
At a live broadcast with fans, the promising George Russell at Sky Sports asked when asked whether current GP drivers had given him tips before entering Formula 1: “Yes, I received advice from Lewis Hamilton, so I did was driving in Formula 2. It was about how I can get more out of the tires. That gave me a little advantage and was later useful for my races with Williams. This little piece of information triggered something in my head. »
Then the young Englishman starts laughing, joking: “I hope Lewis Hamilton will one day regret that he gave me this advice!”