George Russell, Williams, Interlagos, 2018

Russell: Ill-timed failures made F2 title fight harder

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In the round-up: New Williams driver George Russell says ill-timed technical problems made his title-winning Formula Two campaign more difficult.

What they say

Formula Two had several problems with its new hardware in 2018 and Russell suffered particularly from its teething troubles, as he expained:

We had the pace, probably from the second round onwards, we’ve been extremely quick. The car’s been fantastic.

I think we’ve also had many races where we’ve lost a lot of points. We had the race in Budapest where I had a clutch issue before the start of the race and that was my whole weekend ruined. My engine blew up in Monaco from the out-lap of practice and that was the whole weekend ruined as well, having never been to Monaco.

So I’ve had a number of issues where I think we could have gained a lot more points. Even though all of the drivers have had their fair share of problems I think it kind of affected us at circuits I couldn’t come back at, in Monaco and Budapest, or at tracks where we were looking very quick.

Quotes: Dieter Rencken

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Comment of the day

Manuel tips Honda to come good next year:

They made a completely new engine in 2017 with no testing and with severe lack of communication between Mac and Honda. It could only lead to a disastrous season. This year they improved but with a team like Toro Rosso, with there limitations it was never going to be a great season on the results side, everybody was even expecting them to be dead last with no points by the end of the season. but they wanted to develop there engine concept, and that they did.

Red Bull have the data, and they know the strengths and weaknesses of the Honda engine, it’s somewhat competent in qualifying and still a bit lacking in race trim, and that’s different to what they have now, a bad qualifying engine and a competent race engine, that only gets them a comfortable third place and an occasional victory in tracks that don’t require massive engine power.
Manuel Falcao (@Mfalcao)

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13 comments on “Russell: Ill-timed failures made F2 title fight harder”

  1. Regarding COTD, does anybody know how much Honda is paying Red Bull? I would assume it is less than what they were paying McLaren, but even if they pay Red Bull half that, it would still be a $40m-$60m swing in revenues from Red Bull due to not having to pay for customer engines. And even if the Honda is on par/slightly below the Renault in 2019, the extra cash could possibly mean Red Bull can develop their chassis more, negating any losses in performance. As the spending charts showed, Red Bull spends less on their car than both Mercedes and Ferrari. Imagine what they could do with an extra $50m.

    1. Apparently they only supply the engines for free, and no extra cash like they did with McLaren. That’s why they say this is not the same as the Mac Honda partnership McLaren where the Honda works team, as now red bull are only going to be an engine customer (but exclusive customer).

      1. @mfalcao I see, so Honda is not paying to become a “major sponsor/partner” of Red Bull as they did with McLaren. In that case, I wonder if financially, this actually helps Red Bull. They don’t have to pay for engines anymore, but they probably lose millions by losing TAG as their engine sponsor (even though I’m fairly certain TAG remains a sponsor).

        1. @mashiat, you are correct that TAG will remain one of Red Bull’s sponsors in 2019, but they are stepping back in terms of prominence and, presumably, in terms of the amount of sponsorship funding they will provide as well. That will slightly offset some of the benefits from partnering with Honda, though I suspect that Red Bull will not mind if it means Honda are able to pump more money into developing the engines instead.

  2. RG needs to avoid making the same type of errors he made last season if he’s to stand a realistic chance at remaining at Haas beyond next season.

    I thoroughly agree with the COTD.

    1. “In sport in general there is no middle. It is either good or bad, but the middle is never really an option.”
      This statement of his makes me worry a little. I guess can see where he`s coming from, but equally – it could be this mentality that hurts him (and other drivers) sometimes. I wonder if a few people in his team think the middle would have been just good enough sometimes.

  3. Refreshing to see a driver be so open about his mistakes and put his hand up and admit it. It is plausible that Haas could have pipped Renault had Grosjean performed at the same level as Magnussen at the beginning of the season but I think retaining Grosjean and reempahsizing their belief in him means that Haas have a motivated driver for next year which can only bode well.

    1. it should be last chance saloon though.

      Haas line up is very weak when compared to the likes of Renault.

  4. Thomas Bennett (@felipemassadobrasil)
    30th December 2018, 9:41

    Took their time giving Gordon Murray a CBE!

    1. Thomas Bennett (@felipemassadobrasil)
      30th December 2018, 9:42


  5. Knighthood for LEWIS HAMILTON?

    1. Please no, not yet!
      In my opinion, sports people should not be given honours until their sports careers have finished. Then whatever…

    2. On the basis of what he’s achieved he definitely deserves it. However, personally I’d like to see him receive it when he retires.

Comments are closed.