Glum Lewis Hamilton and George Russell in new disagreement at Australian Grand Prix

Glum Lewis Hamilton and George Russell in new disagreement at Australian Grand Prix

Lewis Hamilton and George Russell disagreed again after second practice at the Australian Grand Prix. The seven-time champion felt the Silver Arrows were stronger in FP1 before struggling in the afternoon. 

However, Russell believes this was the other way around with the team making a “step” in performance for FP2. A clearly dejected Hamilton told Sky Sports F1: “This morning was good, this afternoon wasn’t so good. It’s as simple as that yeah. 

“This morning felt a little bit better. Made some changes, didn’t work so we will revise those tonight.” Meanwhile, Russell praised his Mercedes mechanics for making important changes between the two sessions. 

The ex-Williams star added: “It was a reasonable session for us. We definitely made a step from FP1 which is a good thing… We just made a lot of set-up changes over the break. 

“We’ve been doing some good steps recently, we’ve been changing quite a few things and getting the car in a nice window as the weekend progresses.”

Hamilton set a lap quick enough for P2 in first practice in what was an encouraging sign for the German manufacturer. The British star was just four-tenths slower than Max Verstappen who set the pace. 

However, he struggled in the afternoon’s damp conditions with the Mercedes champion only capable of P14. Meanwhile, Russell was fourth quickest as he put pressure on the frontrunners.

But the duo did agree over where Mercedes were likely to finish on Sunday. Hamilton added: “We won’t be competing against the Red Bulls. It will just be about trying to get up as high as possible. I think we have the pace to be around fifth. The same as the last race.”

Russell backed up the view and even warned they could drop lower into the midfield. He commented: “Yeah I’d say that’s a fair assessment. I think if we really pull everything together then the third row probably between P5 and P8 is where we are looking at the moment.”

It comes amid an increase in tensions between Hamilton and Russell after the 25-year-old bit back at his team-mate on Thursday. Hamilton suggested Russell was only quicker in Saudi Arabia after getting lucky on car set-up. But, the youngster rejected the suggestion as he suggested it was not as simple as a 50/50 coin toss.

Published at Fri, 31 Mar 2023 06:36:00 +0000