Nov.17 (GMM) George Russell insists he feels he has driven well in 2023 – even though many believe he has clearly fallen behind his Mercedes teammate Lewis Hamilton.
Indeed, while Hamilton is mathematically still in the hunt for second overall in the drivers’ championship, his much younger British countryman Russell sits just eighth.
“It was a pretty terrible year in terms of results,” Russell admitted to France’s Auto Hebdo in Las Vegas.
“I don’t want to rewrite history but with what happened in Melbourne, where we probably should have won that race, it put me in a cycle of bad outcomes.
“It was the opposite last year, where each good result led to another.”
Russell, 25, won his first grand prix at the tail end of 2022, but he thinks he’s actually driven better this year.
“There are obviously aspects in which I still need to improve, but I have to say that I feel a better driver than last year, even if the results don’t show it,” he said.
Mercedes appeared to finally be closing the big gap to Red Bull with late-season developments, but then team boss Toto Wolff called Brazil just a fortnight ago his “worst weekend in 13 years”.
Russell, though, says there’s hope.
“What gives me a lot of motivation is that we’re not sitting there, helpless, telling ourselves that we’re light years away from them,” he said.
“We’re not going to set our expectations too high, but we’re reasonably optimistic that we can resolve a lot of our problems next year.”