Regardless of the absence of Lewis Hamilton, in qualifying earlier than the Sakhir Grand Prix, the Mercedes group received the complete entrance row. On Sky Sports activities F1, Toto Wolff commented on the group’s work …
Q: Toto, the group has as soon as once more achieved a superb outcome! Two positions within the entrance row, tomorrow your riders will begin on Medium, furthermore, George Russell was simply 0.026 seconds behind Valtteri Bottas!
Toto Wolff: I agree, the outcome is excellent, we once more received the complete first row. On this monitor, the place the lap is accomplished in lower than a minute, the struggle in qualification initially promised to be very tight. The breaks have been minimal, the primary three match into 0.056 seconds, I’m more than happy with how our riders labored.
Q: How nicely is the group doing within the absence of Lewis Hamilton? Is George Russell residing as much as your hopes?
Toto Wolff: The state of affairs is fascinating, as a result of Lewis and George are very totally different. Lewis has been in our group for a very long time, he’s a really skilled and calm driver. George can also be calm, however on the identical time, far more talkative, we regularly hear from him: “Wow, this isn’t what I am used to!” He’s very nice to speak to, however takes his work extraordinarily critically. He managed to adapt to the automotive, though together with his peak within the cockpit he’s clearly cramped! Given the circumstances through which he joined us, and the truth that the configuration of the monitor this weekend is new for everybody, George performs nice, I’m more than happy with him.
Q: You talked about the circumstances through which George joined Mercedes. He needed to get used to in simply a few days, however in qualifying he misplaced lower than tenth to Valtteri. Certainly you count on the absolute best outcome from Russell, however you do not need to over-press him, proper?
Toto Wolff: Earlier than qualifying, I and James Vowles (Mercedes chief strategist – ed.) Talked with George simply with the intention to scale back the strain. I informed him: “When you qualify within the second row, it would already be a improbable achievement. Even for those who get forward of somebody from Ferrari or McLaren, and you end up fifth, it would even be a worthy outcome. ” I believe this dialog helped George.
Q: For the primary time in fourteen years of performances in Method 1, Lewis Hamilton misses the race. He’s in contact with the group, do you retain him knowledgeable of all developments?
Toto Wolff: We’re always exchanging textual content messages. For a racer, this can be a troublesome state of affairs – to skip the weekend because of the coronavirus and watch how somebody as an alternative of you works together with your automotive, however Lewis is extraordinarily skilled about this.
Q: How does Lewis really feel?
Toto Wolff: We didn’t ask him as we speak about his well being, as a result of it isn’t essential to remind the rider as soon as once more in regards to the disagreeable circumstances for him.
Q: However do you count on Hamilton to return to the group in Abu Dhabi?
Toto Wolff: After all sure. If by the stage in Abu Dhabi the second take a look at for the virus seems to be detrimental, which all of us very a lot hope for, then Lewis will return to the cockpit.