George Russell reveals he almost copied Logan Sargeant

George Russell had a strong recovery drive to P4 at the 2023 Qatar GP, after crashing with Lewis Hamilton.

Mercedes driver George Russell has voiced his concerns over the searing conditions at the Qatar Grand Prix, describing them as “borderline too much.” 

Russell disclosed that he came perilously close to fainting just 12 laps into the race, as the high temperatures and humidity took a toll on both the drivers and their cars.

Russell commenced the race from the second position on the grid but endured a dramatic collision with his teammate Lewis Hamilton at the first corner. 

Undeterred by this setback, he demonstrated resilience by rapidly climbing through the ranks during the initial stint of the race. 

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Russell managed to overtake Fernando Alonso and Charles Leclerc to secure the fourth position.

While the air temperature reached a peak of 33°C, the drivers inside their cockpits faced even more challenging conditions due to the oppressive humidity. 

These conditions were further exacerbated by the short stint lengths mandated specifically for this event, requiring drivers to push at a near-qualifying pace throughout the demanding 57-lap race.

Russell voiced his concerns about the extreme conditions, stating, “It was beyond the limit I think for what was acceptable for driving. 

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“If over 50 per cent of the grid was saying they were sick, couldn’t drive, close to passing out… you don’t want to be passing out when you’re driving 200mph down a straight. 

“That’s how I felt at times. 

“Any hotter and I think I would’ve retired because my body was going to give up.”

READ: Lewis Hamilton disagrees with George Russell’s Max Verstappen warning

Despite the challenging circumstances, George Russell’s performance allowed Mercedes to keep their hopes of securing second place in the Constructors’ Standings alive. 

He successfully defended his position against Charles Leclerc, contributing to Mercedes’ points tally in the race. 

With Carlos Sainz unable to participate due to a fuel leak and Lewis Hamilton exiting the Grand Prix following the collision on lap 1, Mercedes extended their lead by two crucial points in the Constructors’ Championship.