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Williams wishing Russell gets Mercedes call

Williams wishing Russell gets Mercedes call

F1 News

Williams wishing Russell gets Mercedes call

Williams wishing Russell gets Mercedes call
Ian Parkes & Will Gray

Williams team principal Jost Capito is hoping George Russell can secure a seat with Mercedes for 2022.

Russell has said his future will be decided in the summer break, meaning a decision on whether he or Valtteri Bottas will partner Lewis Hamilton next season will be made before the end of August.

Asked if he knows which way the decision will go, Capito said: “No, and I don’t care. I would wish that George gets the seat, because he is in the position now in his career where he can handle to be in an absolute top team and fight for the championship.

“I would never hold a young driver back if he can have this kind of opportunity. So I hope for him that he gets this opportunity [although] from the team’s side, of course, we would very much love to keep him.

“If he goes to Mercedes and gets the offer, he gets the full support from us and if not he gets the full support from us as well, and that’s why on our drivers’ side we can easily wait until that decision is taken.”

Latifi set to retain his seat

Capito says Williams is now in a position to directly choose its drivers, rather than be beholden to outside pressures, and knocked back rumours Mercedes could place its Formula E drivers with the team next year.

Russell’s team-mate Nicolas Latifi is also facing contract discussions around his future beyond the end of this year, but Capito suggested the Canadian driver is doing enough to continue with Williams for 2022.

Asked what Latifi must do to secure his place, Capito explained: “I think very much to continue improving and have a strong second half of the season. When you compare him to George, it’s not that big of a difference, especially in the races.

“He has a good race speed, he brings the car home, he doesn’t make mistakes, he helps the team, he’s liked by the team and in the qualifying he had a couple of times where George had good luck and he had bad luck.

“Wind conditions, for example, changed from his run to George’s run and our car is very sensitive to the wind conditions. When we analyse it, he’s pretty good, so there’s no reason not to have him in next year.”

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