Toto Wolff Lays Down the Ground Rules for George Russell at Mercedes F1

Published 11/03/2021, 10:05 AM EDT
Formula One F1 – Sakhir Grand Prix – Bahrain International Circuit, Sakhir, Bahrain – Mercedes’ George Russell celebrates after qualifying in second position Pool via REUTERS/Tolga Bozoglu


In an often slow Williams, George Russell has shown glimpses of his talent by putting in some fast laps this season, consequently earning himself the ‘Mr. Saturday’ nickname. But to his future Team Principal Toto Wolff, his pace “doesn’t matter,” or rather it sits behind in the list of priorities.

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In F1, it’s usually assumed that it’s the speed that is the major determinant in a driver’s performance, but at Mercedes, things are different.

Toto Wolff keeps something else ahead of the pace.

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“It doesn’t matter whether he is slower or faster or tied with Lewis. He has to be a team player. With us, the team is the star, not a single member of it,” Wolff said as reported by GrandPrix.News.

Despite his promise and the expectations surrounding Russell, Wolff only expects him to ‘fits in well’ within the system of Silver Arrows.

What does it mean?

“That means learning.”

FILE PHOTO: Formula One F1 – Belgian Grand Prix – Spa-Francorchamps, Stavelot, Belgium – September 1, 2019 Mercedes’ Lewis Hamilton and Williams’ George Russell before the race REUTERS/Johanna Geron/File Photo

George Russell and Mercedes coming together at important times for both

Toto Wolff’s comments shouldn’t be misconstrued as warnings but as advice.

In fact, the Austrian knows that George Russell is all but surely the successor of Lewis Hamilton.

Dive Deep: F1 Twitter Goes Berserk as George Russell Is Announced as Lewis Hamilton’s Teammate at Mercedes

So, he is perhaps grooming the young English driver to be mentally ready to step in Hamilton’s big shoes when the seven-time world champion steps out of his F1 car for the last time.

Speaking of the 36-year-old Hamilton, Wolff revealed that both of them exchange their ideas on a regular basis.

“..we both know that a Formula 1 career is a moving goal. There is no date he is committed to.”

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With Hamilton, Mercedes have created an era of domination for the history books, winning seven consecutive double championships.

With Formula 1 heading in a new direction in 2022 and a new era in 2026, Toto Wolff, as he has done so well in the past, is preparing the Silver Arrows for a new future.

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And George Russell is a key element of that process.

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Shaharyar

246 articles

Shaharyar is a Formula 1 & NASCAR writer at EssentiallySports. A Graduate in Journalism from Amity University, he has been a passionate follower of motorsports for the better part of the decade. A Max Verstappen and Ferrari supporter, he dreams of a pairing of the two in the future.

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