Lewis Hamilton and George Russell—the two Mercedes Formula One racers—have been involved in tussles on track during the last two races. Hamiton even openly suggested that it was “not a good idea at all” to provide Russell with DRS to resist Carlos Sainz’s Ferrari at the Japanese Grand Prix. Mercedes communications director Bradley Lord recently talked about the reported tensions between Hamilton and Russell.
“They were obviously both racing hard in a car that was tricky pushing to the limit. There were obviously some radio traffic as well that reflected that. But I think we’ve got into the habit over the years of not reading too much to into what’s said in the heat of the moment in the pressure of the cockpit, particularly at a hot and demanding race like this one,” Lord told Sky Sports, as per Total Motorsport.
“Anything that needs tidying up or discussing afterwards, we’ll be able to do away from that pressure cooker and nice and calmly in the debrief,” Lord added.
George Russell had an impressive debut campaign with Mercedes last year as he managed to outscore Lewis Hamilton. The British driver, though, scripted a brilliant comeback as he is currently enjoying a healthy 75-point lead over his teammate, with six races still remaining this year. The seven-time world champion currently finds himself at the third spot in the Drivers’ standings with 190 points to his name. Russell, on the other hand, is placed eighth spot on the points table.
Russell secured eight podiums in his first campaign with Mercedes. The 25-year-old also earned Mercedes’ only win of last year. The scene, however, has not been quite similar this time. Russell has managed to clinch a top-three finish just once so far this time.
Russell was poised to claim his second top-three finish at the Singapore Grand Prix but his final-lap crash allowed Lewis Hamilton to get his fifth podium of this campaign. The two Mercedes racers have been driving together since Russell joined the Silver Arrows at the start of last year. Both Hamilton and Russell are contracted under Mercedes until the end of the 2025 season.
The Japanese Grand Prix experienced one of the most thrilling rivalries between the two Mercedes drivers this season. In the initial phase of the race, Russell went past his teammate at the last corner before Hamilton re-positioned himself into Turn One. After a few laps, both the racers went off track with Russell trying to overtake Hamilton at the Spoon Curve. Hamilton claimed a fifth-placed finish at the Suzuka Circuit while George Russell completed the race at the seventh spot.