Lewis Hamilton has praised the integration of George Russell into the Mercedes F1 team as being "seamless" after joining from Williams over the winter.
Russell has been part of the Mercedes set up since 2017 when he joined the manufacturer's young driver programme but this year will be his first as a factory driver for the team.
With three years of experience of his own at Williams on top of time spent watching over the shoulders of Valtteri Bottas and Hamilton, Russell is far from a new face to those within Mercedes.
"George fits very easily into the team, we worked together previously in the engineering room in plenty of races in the past where he’s sat behind me and watched everything I did, same with Valtteri," explained Hamilton.
"He knew everyone, so it’s been seamless and we’re working together, communicating a lot in terms of setup direction so it’s working well."
Although unable to recall the first time Russell had been in the garage with the team as a junior driver, Hamilton reflected on what his first impression of his countryman had been.
“I just remember him being in the engineer’s room with us and feeling very much a part of the team and one of my teammates before this year," Hamilton added.
“That’s why it’s been quite easy and I think George is naturally incredibly talented, very focused. So far he seems very genuine and focused on being the best team player he can be.
“So far that’s what I see and it’s pleasant for everyone in the team, it seems very seamless and we’re just keeping our heads down, working collectively as a team and as a unit.”