George Russell, Williams, Paul Ricard, 2021

Russell frustrated not to score despite beating a Ferrari in France

2021 French Grand Prix

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George Russell said he was frustrated to finish out of the points despite a strong race at Paul Ricard.

The Williams driver scored his best result of the season, beating several drivers he qualified behind, but remains yet to score.

“To beat the Alfas, overtaking Tsunoda on track to get ahead – we don’t normally do this. It’s just so frustrating, every time we have a good race there’s never any retirements or incident or anything.

“This has happened I think three times now where we’ve finished 12th or something and we’ve had a really strong race. But it’ll come, I’m just really happy with how things panned out.”

Russell, who also finished ahead of Charles Leclerc’s Ferrari, praised his team for “a very well-managed race with the tyres” on a day when others struggled with their rubber.

“It was incredibly difficult to balance between not going too quick and graining the tyre and not going too slow and losing the temperature. And we did a really good job. I was really confident in the car.”

Despite not scoring, Russell’s result moves Williams up from last place in the constructors’ championship to ninth ahead of Haas. “I had this in the back of my mind,” he admitted.

“If we’re not in the points we need to focus on getting that P9 back in the championship. I mean, we obviously don’t know if Haas will score points this year or not, but it’s making sure we finish as high as possible so we beat them even if we’re on zero points.

“P12 today, back in P9 in the constructors, this is very important for the team.”

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Keith Collantine
Lifelong motor sport fan Keith set up RaceFans in 2005 - when it was originally called F1 Fanatic. Having previously worked as a motoring...

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7 comments on “Russell frustrated not to score despite beating a Ferrari in France”

  1. And… Everything that is wrong with modern F1 in one article.
    Most talented grid ever.

  2. Omar R (@omarr-pepper)
    20th June 2021, 18:49

    It’s not that special to beat a Ferrari when they were the ones which had a Williams-esque race today.

    1. Coventry Climax
      20th June 2021, 22:12

      So, to me, what you’re saying is actually, that it is not that special for Ferrari to have a Williams-esque race.
      Either way, to Williams and Russel it IS special to finally finish a race in front of a Ferrari again, no matter what the cause. It is something that has not happened for a long time now, whatever the cause. That is the definition of special, as far as I know.

      1. Quite sad though when you think back about 2003 with montoya and williams vs schumacher and ferrari (and mclaren and raikkonen) fighting for the title, to see 2 of these teams fight for the bottom positions.

  3. Still can’t afford the Cursebreaker.

  4. Ben Rowe (@thegianthogweed)
    20th June 2021, 23:16

    He also could well have finished higher up had he not lost 4 places in the first 2 laps. He even fell to 19th briefly. He had a good recovery, but he really needs to sort his launches and preparation laps out if he expects a close points finish to result in points. Russell far too often goes backwards instantly and then recovers. Although he was incredibly quick today, his early mistake cost him a lot of time. He was still behind Latifi who was far slower than him on lap 17.

    1. Yes, he doesn’t seem to be very effective in race day on williams, he surprised me with his mercedes race, I’d have given him a 5 races trial deal with mercedes to see how he did and if he did well regularly, I’d have swapped bottas with him.

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