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Mercedes and Williams "in same boat" with wind sensitivity problems - Russell

Mercedes and Williams "in same boat" with wind sensitivity problems - Russell

F1 News

Mercedes and Williams "in same boat" with wind sensitivity problems - Russell

Mercedes and Williams "in same boat" with wind sensitivity problems - Russell

George Russell believes Williams and Mercedes share the same issues with wind sensitivity problems on their 2021 Formula 1 cars.

Both teams struggled for consistency in the season-opening Bahrain Grand Prix, although Mercedes ultimately took victory courtesy of Lewis Hamilton whilst Russell advanced his FW43B into Q2 in qualifying.

With Red Bull catching the eye in the battle with Mercedes and Alfa Romeo emerging as potential midfield runners, Russell suggested performance levels were masked by the extreme winds experienced in Bahrain.

“I believe potentially Mercedes are in the same boat [as us]," Russell said when asked about the effects of wind gusts.

"I think they probably struggled more than we will see them struggle at races in the near future.

“Perhaps Red Bull and the likes of Alfa Romeo more competitive relative to the field than we will see in races to come.

“They were very windy conditions [in Bahrain], 50kmph winds. It’s very open and exposed and when you’re driving along at 50kmph, even a 5kmph wind makes a difference so you can imagine what 50kmph is like with gusts of 60,70 or 80kmph.

"Something as substantial as that will require a big redesign which obviously we have not done yet. It is what we have got. It is what a lot of teams have got."

With the next race taking place at Imola, Russell, who squandered Williams' best chance of points with a crash under safety car conditions at the venue last season, is expecting an improved performance under sheltered conditions.

"Imola has higher speed corners, the angle of those corners is less as in 90-degree corners rather than 180-degree corners and is very enclosed with all the trees and the buildings around," he added.

“We’re going from two extremes really. I’m not necessarily saying Imola will be at the top end but it will be in the top half let’s say.”

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