Russell reveals lap one error which left him unable to drink all race

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In the round-up: George Russell left himself unable to drink throughout the Mexico City Grand Prix after accidentally removing his drink tube on the first lap of the race.

In brief

Russell caused drinks system failure

Russell drove the majority of the Mexico City Grand Prix without a drink after accidentally disconnecting his fluids system on the first lap. The Williams driver said he was trying to inspect his car for damage at the time.

“I made it a little bit more tricky because under the Safety Car, I peered over the cockpit to check the front wing and in doing so, pulled my drinks tube out,” Russell said. “So I lost the drinks tube on the first lap, so I was a bit thirsty.”

Air temperatures reached 23C during the race and conditions in Russell’s cockpit would have been much hotter, as the asphalt hit over 48C.

Sergio Perez was also unable to drink during the previous race at the Circuit of the Americas. “I think Checo was making a big deal out of in Austin,” Russell joked.

Steiner: Schumacher retirement a “pure racing incident”

Haas team principal Günther Steiner said Mick Schumacher‘s lap one retirement from the Mexico City Grand Prix was no particular driver’s fault.

“This was a pure racing accident, it was pretty simple,” said Steiner. “I think it was at turn one, an Alpine was squeezed into the middle on both sides, and Mick went over the wheel and broke the suspension.

“These things happen,” he continued, describing the retirement as Schumacher’s “first one in these circumstances.”

Ocon: “three cars in the same corner never works”

Esteban Ocon said his collisions with Schumacher and Yuki Tsunoda, which ended both drivers’ races, was probably “triggered by Bottas” as the Mercedes driver was spun around on track.

Ocon described the chaos which unfolded as Bottas spun ahead of him. “There was Fernando [Alonso] closing on the right side, so that pushed Mick towards me. And then you had Yuki there with not much space, so there’s not much more I could have done on my side.

He said he was “sorry that we’ve collided like that” but there “was nothing that I could have done – and three cars in the same corner never works, really.”

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Comment of the day

After Daniel Ricciardo’s candid description of his difficult start to the year, Tristan muses on Red Bull’s tumultuous time since his 2018 departure.

Everything happens for a reason. If Daniel never left Red Bull we never would have seen Gasly and Albon in a top car and how it compares to Max, let alone Perez. The whole field would be different now without his Renault and McLaren switches. I don’t think anyone has any regrets or bad feelings about it now, it’s been win-win-win really (with the exception of Abiteboul?).

The only thing maybe missed was seeing Daniel and Max pushing each other further and learning from each other with racecraft, but even if they did for years there would be so much bad blood due to hard decisions like Baku and in a year like this; they probably would have taken more points of each other to ruin their chances more than help it.

By the end of it Daniel would have probably left being beaten by Max on average, possibly seen by other teams as not good enough anyway, and burnt out after years of intense rivalry (think Hamilton Rosberg). Instead here he is now having learnt more, proven more, and on an upwards trajectory with big regulation changes and a more competitive F1 on the horizon.

I also can’t imagine many drivers have had to endure the isolation of Covid as hard as Daniel has, with regards to the Australian situation. We’ve basically had closed borders for the better part of two years, at least not without 14-day isolation that isn’t compatible with the F1 calendar. Not being able to see family freely for that long has an effect on everyone, let alone a top athlete in one of the most high pressure circuses. Very different to the Euro-based drivers that can zip back and forward to home whenever they want.

Hopefully with things returning to normal thanks to the vaccine rate, he can enjoy a much more relaxing off season and build up to next year. Really can’t wait to see if they’ll have a competitive car.
Tristan

Happy birthday!

Happy birthday to Soundscape and Laura Brewer!

On this day in motorsport

  • 35 years ago today Damon Hill won the Brands Hatch Rallysprint against rivals including F1 drivers Martin Brundle, Derek Warwick and Johnny Dumfries plus Stig Blomqvist, Jimmy McRae.

Author information

Hazel Southwell
Hazel is a motorsport and automotive journalist with a particular interest in hybrid systems, electrification, batteries and new fuel technologies....

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  • 3 comments on “Russell reveals lap one error which left him unable to drink all race”

    1. I saw the marshalls, didn’t think much of it. Why not? Good to see after all, F1 is not a climate summit.

    2. RE: CoTD

      On Beyond The Grid, Dan said he has been missing home due to not being able to return to WA, I can only guess how much it affects his emotional balance, especially at the start of the year when he was struggling.

      I think Dan’s management made the right decision to leave RB. As you say, staying would have reduced his stock. Not being at Max’s level is nothing to be ashamed of, he is on another level. Dan is World Championship material, he has proved that he can race at the front and win, the stars just have to align now.

    3. So another drink-related issue, this time caused by the relevant driver himself.

      A lengthy, but good COTD.

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