Lewis Hamilton changes his tune on shocking George Russell incident

Lewis Hamilton qualified ahead of George Russell for the third time this season at the 2023 Spanish GP.

Seven-time World Champion Lewis Hamilton has agreed with team-mate George Russell following qualifying at the Spanish Grand Prix, with both Mercedes drivers having blamed “miscommunication” for their Q2 collision.

Hamilton was lucky to escape with only minimal front wing damage following an incident with Russell at the end of Q2 down the start/finish straight, after the former Williams driver squeezed the 38-year-old off the circuit.

Russell was seemingly unaware that Hamilton was alongside him as a result of a huge tow, with the 25-year-old having been busy trying to get a tow himself from Carlos Sainz ahead of him.

Hamilton was quick to complain about Russell following the incident, with the 103-time race winner having labelled his team-mate as “really dangerous”.

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“George just backed off. That’s really dangerous. I might have some damage on the car,” Hamilton said over the team radio.

In Russell’s defence, the Briton did immediately apologise for the incident.

“You didn’t tell me there was a car behind. Sorry guys, I’m not sure what was going on,” Russell said.

However, following qualifying, Hamilton seemingly took back his initial comments, with him having noted that the incident occurred due to a communication error with the Silver Arrows.

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“The car didn’t feel massively different. Afterwards, the car was pulling to the right. It was just a miscommunication thing but on the final lap it was alright,” Hamilton told Sky Sports F1.

The veteran also discussed how surprised he was to have claimed fifth on the grid for Sunday’s race, with him having believed that he wasn’t even going to make Q3 following Free Practice 2.

“It was a real surprise to see us so far up front and, ultimately, competing for the front row,” Hamilton said.

“We did some great work overnight with the analysis. I was here until 11pm last night trying to figure out where we could find the time. When I woke up this morning I was on a mission.

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“I definitely didn’t expect us to be fighting for the front row. The car came alive today from P3.

“I was basically front row all the way until Turn 10. I got into Turn 10, got on the power and the car snapped into oversteer.

“I have to see exactly what happened. That’s where I lost two tenths. I’m not killer-disappointed. Maybe if I was fighting for a world championship I would be. I’m more encouraged to see the car where it is and hopefully tomorrow we can progress forwards.”