When George Russell joins Mercedes, Lewis Hamilton expects a repeat performance from Fernando Alonso.
George Russell is expected to join Lewis Hamilton at Mercedes at the end of the season.
George Russell, according to Lewis Hamilton, will join Mercedes with the same attitude he had when he first entered Formula One as Fernando Alonso’s McLaren team-mate.
Valtteri Bottas is set to step down from the Silver Arrows’ second seat at the end of the season, bringing the British duo closer together.
Russell’s time lagging near the back of the field with Williams will come to an end at the end of the season.
It took a long time to reach an agreement that will see him replace Bottas, but the Mercedes junior driver will make the step up for next season.
Bottas, meanwhile, will step aside and join Alfa Romeo after winning only one race this year.
Russell will be expected to compete for podiums and victories on a consistent basis for the first time in his young career, and Hamilton is well aware that the 23-year-old will be hungry for success.
Based on his own battles with Alonso, it appears that fierce competition is on the horizon.
“As you know, George is a very respectful individual,” Hamilton said in an interview with Auto-Motor-Und.
“He’s incredibly talented, and we already have a great deal of mutual respect.”
“He’ll be quick and eager to succeed in whatever you set out to do for a new position.”
“I remember saying before the Alonso duel that I wanted to beat him in the first race.”
“I expect George to take the same approach; otherwise, he wouldn’t be a winner.”
Indeed, Hamilton and Alonso collided frequently during the former’s rookie season in 2007, and the two finished the year deadlocked, one point behind world champion Kimi Raikkonen.
This year, the British driver has had to rediscover the essence of his ruthless, competitive streak by competing against Max Verstappen in the tight Drivers’ Championship race.
The presence of Russell alongside him could be a big help for next season, as Bottas has been chastised for lagging behind at times this season.
Despite the competitive aspect, Jenson Button, Hamilton’s former teammate and world champion, believes the move will be beneficial to the Mercedes driver.
“It puts a lot of pressure on Lewis.”
“Brinkwire News in Condensed Form.”