Red Bull F1 Boss Tepidly Brushes Off Upcoming George Russell-Mercedes F1 Threat

Published 12/19/2021, 6:01 AM EST
Formula One F1 – Young Driver Test – Yas Marina Circuit, Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates – December 14, 2021 Mercedes’ George Russell during testing REUTERS/Hamad I Mohammed


Mercedes welcomes the new season with a new member added to their team. With George Russell bringing a fresh face and new talent to the team, things could go extremely well or even unpleasantly for the team. Red Bull boss Helmut Marko, however, remains unimpressed with the upcoming Brit.

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Russell brings a lot of excitement to F1 and Mercedes, yet Marko seems shut-off from it. When asked if Russell could be a potential threat, Marko answered, “Do you think? First, I want to see how fast Russell will be.”

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Quickly analyzing the driver, Marko answered cooly. “In practice this year he went fast but in the race, he was not so superior to Latifi. Hamilton could be an advantage for us.” 

Nonetheless, Marko’s observations aren’t wrong. Although Russell had an overly impressive first half of the season, the flame died down in the second half. Soon, Nicholas Latifi began out-qualifying his teammate- something that had never happened before.

However, as Russell gets ready to drive for the biggest team in Formula 1, surely he will amplify his game.

George Russell in a Mercedes

Although the young drivers’ test in Abu Dhabi wasn’t the first time we’ve seen Russell in a Silver Arrow, it was the first time Russell was officially a part of the team. Thus, it was a strange feeling for the driver. 

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“it was a really great day to be back with the guys and learning about these new tires. It’s obviously always a pleasant experience driving a World Championship-winning car, the 2019 Mercedes, and with these 18-inch Pirellis, which seemed to react pretty positively so yes–it was a nice day.”

And while his first day at work with Mercedes was breezy, Russell had an unfortunate end to his time with Williams. An engine problem saw Russell in the pits before the checkered flag. “I think it was very unfortunate; we had something fly into the airbox above my helmet which caused the engine to overheat and ultimately I had to retire.”

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With an enticing future awaiting him after the winter break, Russell will be ready to take on Formula 1 as a Mercedes driver. Maybe after a couple of races, Helmut Marko will feel the heat?

Watch this story: Lewis Hamilton’s Incredible Car Collection

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Shreya Sanjeev

771 articles

Shreya Sanjeev is an F1 author at EssentiallySports. Having attained a journalism degree from St Xavier's College, she finds comfort in the sound of her keyboard while typing and excitement in the sound of F1 cars speeding on a track. A street circuit and Daniel Ricciardo fan through and through, Shreya claims the 2018 Monaco GP to be one of her favorite races of all time.

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