Toto Wolff Bursts Lewis Hamilton & George Russell’s Fantasy Bubble With a Brutal Reality Check Despite Qualifying “Happiness”

Published 04/01/2023, 2:00 PM EDT

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After two disappointing race weekends in 2023, Mercedes seems to have finally caught up to the pack. In today’s qualifying session, the Silver Arrows showed the pace of old as both the drivers secured a 2-3 grid finish. That being said, the pace-setters are clearly Red Bull with the 2x champion, Max Verstappen, behind the wheel of the RB19. But with some really promising pace shown by both Lewis Hamilton and George Russell, the team would be very confident of a solid race result.

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Starting from the front row of the grid, Russell would be hoping to jump Verstappen at the start. Once all of that has started, the ideal situation for the Silver Arrows would be to stretch their legs and sail off into the distance. However, according to team principal Toto Wolff, both Hamilton and Russell need to be pulled back to planet earth.

Toto Wolff dashes dreams of glory for Lewis Hamilton and George Russell

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In light of the Bulls’ dominance, Wolff was skeptical about their chances tomorrow. Express UK quoted him as saying, “I think we learnt through the session and we have been open-minded and we changed the plan. I think it is good starting second and third. It has been a while since we had no one in front of our line in P2.”

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“We will just try to make the best out of it. Verstappen is in a league of his own, but maybe we can then slot in. We needed a little bit of happiness and at least for Saturday today, we got some of that.”

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However, while Hamilton is focused on this weekend, traumas of the past threaten to resurface.

Michael Masi snubbed by Hamilton at the Australian GP

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Anyone who has been following the sport for some time now knows what went down during that fateful night in Abu Dhabi in 2021. Even though it’s been over a year now, you’d be well within your rights to assume that Hamilton and Michael Masi don’t see eye-to-eye.

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Masi was in attendance at Albert Park for the weekend in his role as chairman of the V8 Supercars Commission. And when Hamilton was asked if he’d seek the Aussie out, he bluntly said, “I don’t (plan to). I am just focused on my future. I am focused on trying to get back to winning. There is nothing to say,” as quoted by the media present at the venue.

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Can Hamilton break his winless streak tomorrow with both his arch-enemies in attendance?

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Written by:

Anirban Aly Mandal

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Anirban Aly Mandal is a Formula 1 Author at EssentiallySports. In his pursuit for a Bachelor's degree in Law from Symbiosis Law School, he has written multiple academic papers centered around the domain of motorsports. Not only that, but due to his love for F1, he aims to work as a legal advisor in the most prestigious racing series in the world some day.
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Edited by:

Akash Pandhare

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