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Russell slates "processional" sprint race

Russell slates "processional" sprint race

F1 News

Russell slates "processional" sprint race

Russell slates "processional" sprint race

George Russell has slated F1's sprint as "processional" after being tied up in a DRS train during the 21-lap qualifying event at Imola.

The Mercedes driver started 11th and dropped a position on the first lap to Mick Schumacher in the Haas, having struggled for one-lap pace on Friday.

Russell was unable to get back past the German whilst Schumacher was trapped behind Sebastian Vettel for the majority of the sprint, although was able to make the move back to his original starting position by following the Haas past the four-time champion.

Reviewing the event, Russell said: "It's tricky these sprint races.

"I don't know what the rest of the race was like but it felt processional from where we were. The race just isn't long enough to get some tyre degradation there and to have some big differences between the drivers and the cars.

"But we've got work to do. I think the car is faster but we just don't have the speed in the straights to actually move forward and here, you've got the small kinks in the straight and there is only one overtaking opportunity so that halted our progress."

Mercedes strategy "key" for Imola result

Russell will hope Mercedes' race pace will be able to promote him forward, despite failing to make progress in Saturday's sprint.

Asked of his prospects for the grand prix itself, he explained: "I think strategy is going to be key and we're going to have to do something different to our competition and that will give us an opportunity to fight and move up the grid.

"I'm sure we will understand more tonight but it's going to be tricky."

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